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U.S. Housing Market Recovery Continues as Prices in November Post Largest Gains in 6 and 1/2 Years

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - Jan 18, 2013) - U.S. homebuilders prospered in 2012 as rising prices and shrinking inventories provided ample opportunities for growth within the industry. The SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF (XHB) has gained over 50 percent in the past year. Five Star Equities examines the outlook for companies in the Residential Construction Industry and provides equity research on Hovnanian Enterprises, Inc. ( NYSE : HOV ) and Standard Pacific Corp. ( NYSE : SPF ).

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CoreLogic recently reported U.S. home prices in November gained 7.4 percent year-over-year, the largest gain on 6.5 years. Rising prices is seen as a key factor in the U.S. housing market's recovery, and CoreLogic forecasts prices to continue to rise in 2013 by 6 percent.

"We have very low mortgage rates. We have good affordable house prices. And they seem to be rebounding, so that fear of buying a home and seeing it fall in value has disappeared. And we have a lot of pent-up demand," says David Crowe, chief economist with the National Association of Homebuilders. "We have people who have been waiting for two or three or more years to see those market conditions improve, and now they're taking advantage of that."

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Hovnanian Enterprises is one of the nation's largest homebuilders with operations in 17 states across the U.S. Total revenues were $487.0 million in the fiscal 2012 fourth quarter, an increase of 42.6 percent when compared with $341.6 million in the prior year's fourth quarter. Shares of the Hovnanian Enterprises have gained over 50 percent in the past year.

Standard Pacific operates in many of the largest housing markets in the country with operations in major metropolitan areas in California, Florida, Arizona, the Carolinas, Texas and Colorado. Shares of the company have gained over 90 percent in the past year. Standard Pacific is scheduled to release its fourth quarter results on Monday, February 4th.

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