OUTLOOK UP: U.S. homebuilders are feeling less pessimistic about the struggling housing market, the National Association of Home Builders said Wednesday. Its index of builder sentiment rose to 20 in November, the highest level since May 2010.
STILL NEGATIVE: Any reading below 50 indicates negative sentiment about the housing market. It hasn't reached 50 since April 2006, the peak of the housing boom.
LOW RATES: The trade group cited low mortgage rates as a chief factor for the increase. The average rate on the 30-year fixed mortgage has fallen below 4 percent twice this year. But that has done little to boost home sales.