Two Alternative Housing Plays

It wasn't hard taking a glass-half-full perspective when housing starts and building permit data for March were released Tuesday before the open. Starts were surprisingly weak, falling to 654,000 from a downwardly revised 694,000 in February. The consensus estimate expected a slight increase to 700,000. The good news was that building permits rose much more than expected to 747,000. The consensus estimate was for a slight decline to 710,000.

That makes two-straight months now where permit data came in better than expected. Home builders rallied on the news, but lagged the broader market. The S&P 500 rallied 1.55% but the iShares Dow Jones U.S. Home Construction Index Fund (ITB) had a hard time keeping up, rising just 1.18%....509 more words left in this article. To read them, just click below and try Real Money FREE for 14 days.

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