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Homebuilder Stocks: Winners & Losers

NEW YORK, N.Y. ( TheStreet) -- Stocks in the homebuilder sector were mostly higher on Thursday.

Shares of NVR (NVR - Get Report) edged up 0.4% after the builder and mortgage banker beat top- and bottom-line quarterly earnings expectations .
New Homes

Despite the beat, NVR's profits tumbled nearly 40%, and earnings nearly 17%, from year-earlier results, as new orders, settlements and homes sold but not yet settled all declined in the quarter. NVR's cancellation rate rose to 18%, from 14% a year ago.

"With contract backlog at $1.2 billion, we see revenues rising in the mid single-digits in 2010 and 2011," noted S&P homebuilder analyst Ken Leon, who maintained a buy rating on NVR shares but lowered his price target by $40 to $720. Modeling on weaker sales, the analyst lowered his 2010 earnings-per-share expectations to $32, from $38, and 2011's eps estimate to $40 from $43 per share. "However, NVR's competitive strengths include its strong balance sheet and communities in non-Sunbelt markets."

The most heavily traded stocks in the homebuilder sector Thursday were PulteGroup (PHM - Get Report) and D.R. Horton (DHI - Get Report).

PulteGroup shares fell 0.5% in early afternoon trading while D.R. Horton pushed up 2.2%.

Lennar (LEN - Get Report), which returned to year-over-year profitability when it reported quarterly earnings in late September, added 0.8% Thursday afternoon.

>> Lennar Beats on Return to Profitability
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SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG
CHCI $0.40 -9.09%
DHI $29.60 0.44%
KBH $15.98 0.13%
LEN $52.43 0.48%
NVR $1,493.97 0.53%

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Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,698.38 -47.60 -0.27%
S&P 500 2,106.77 -1.86 -0.09%
NASDAQ 5,132.40 +3.6150 0.07%

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