Near-term housing indicators remain at historically elevated levels as evidenced by the National Association of Realtors' upward revision of its home sales forecast last week. The Mortgage Bankers Association also projects increased home sales going forward.

The National Association Realtors forecasts existing home sales to increase 4.2% to 7.07 million in 2005 while new home sales are projected to rise 7.1% to 1.29 million. Total housing starts should gain 4.5% to 2.04 million units in 2005 - the highest on record since 1973 - while single-family starts are expected to set a record of 1.70 million. The Pending Home Sales Index has just set a record as well.

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