NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Lennar Corp. (LEN) finished the day in the green, closing up by 1.77% to $49.50 on Monday afternoon, as some home builder stocks got a boost from the release of data from the National Association of Realtors showing a better than expected rise in existing home sales in May.
Existing home sales grew by 5.1% in May from April to a seasonally adjusted rate of 5.35 million, the National Association of Realtors data showed.
Economists polled by The Wall Street Journal were expecting May sales would grow by 4.2% to a pace of 5.25 million.
The return of first time buyers to the market helped to give May sales a jolt.
"We're moving back toward a more normal housing market," Stephen Stanley, chief economist at Amherst Pierpont Securities told The Journal.
Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates LENNAR CORP as a Buy with a ratings score of B+. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate LENNAR CORP (LEN) a BUY. This is driven by a few notable strengths, which we believe should have a greater impact than any weaknesses, and should give investors a better performance opportunity than most stocks we cover. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its robust revenue growth, solid stock price performance, impressive record of earnings per share growth, reasonable valuation levels and compelling growth in net income. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had generally high debt management risk by most measures that we evaluated."