In July, the NAHB housing market index picked up after a sharp decline in the month before. The NAHB housing market index rose from 13 to 15, while the consensus was looking for an improvement to only 14. The details show that sentiment about both the present situation (15 from 13) and future (22 from 15) picked up in July. Buyers’ traffic on the contrary stabilized at 12. The improvement is an encouraging sign and raises hopes that the housing market is starting to recover. Nevertheless, the index is still near record low levels, indicating that the market remains depressed as builders continue to struggle with fierce competition from foreclosed properties and tight credit conditions.