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National Association Of Home Builders/First American Improving Markets Index Expands From 30 Metropolitan Areas In November To 41 In December

Anchorage, Alaska San Jose, Calif. Boulder, Colo. Fort Collins, Colo. Washington, D.C. Athens, Ga. Davenport, Iowa Waterloo, Iowa Kankakee, Ill. Fort Wayne, Ind. Muncie, Ind. Monroe, La. New Orleans, La. Ann Arbor, Mich. Muskegon, Mich. Jackson, Miss. Fayetteville, N.C. Winston-Salem, N.C. Bismarck, N.D. Grand Forks, N.D. Lincoln, Neb. Canton, Ohio Toledo, Ohio Pittsburgh, Pa. Scranton, Pa. Williamsport, Pa. Kingsport, Tenn. Amarillo, Texas Corpus Christi, Texas Laredo, Texas McAllen, Texas Midland, Texas Odessa, Texas Sherman, Texas Tyler, Texas Danville, Va. Winchester, Va. Burlington, Vt. Charleston, W.V. Casper, Wyo. Cheyenne, Wyo.

"The December IMI results are very much in keeping with the latest government housing data and our own builder surveys, which have shown modest signs of improvement in certain individual markets where employment is gaining and distressed properties are not as numerous," said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. "These gradual improvements are now becoming evident not just in small, energy-producing metros that have previously dominated the IMI, but also in several larger markets and areas with more diverse economies."

The IMI is designed to track housing markets throughout the country that are showing signs of improving economic health. The index measures three sets of independent monthly data to get a mark on the top improving Metropolitan Statistical Areas. The three indicators that are analyzed are employment growth from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, house price appreciation from Freddie Mac and single-family housing permit growth from the U.S. Census Bureau. NAHB uses the latest available data from these sources to generate a list of improving markets. A metro area must see improvement in all three areas for at least six months following their respective troughs before being included on the improving markets list.

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