Falling mortgage rates helped end a four-month decline in builder confidence, and recent economic data signal improving housing conditions heading into 2024. Builder confidence in the market for newly built single-family homes rose three points to 37 in December, according to the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI). With mortgage rates down roughly 50 basis points over the past month, builders are reporting an uptick in traffic. The housing market appears to have passed peak mortgage rates for this cycle, and this should help to spur home buyer demand in the coming months, with the HMI component measuring future sales expectations up six points in December. …The HMI index gauging traffic of prospective buyers in December rose three points 24, the component measuring sales expectations in the next six months increased six points to 45 and the component charting current sales condition held steady at 40.