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/ Source: Reuters

Confidence among U.S. homebuilders rose for the first time this year as builders felt better about their prospects of selling new homes, an industry gauge showed on Monday.

The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo index of homebuilder confidence rose four points to 49 in June, coming in just a point below the level that indicates favorable conditions.

June's index came in above May's 45 showing, which was the weakest since May 2013.

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A reading below 50 means more builders view market conditions as poor than favorable. The June reading was the index's fifth in a row to come in below 50. Analysts polled by Reuters had expected the index to inch up to 47.

The U.S. housing market is still finding its feet after a slump brought on by protracted winter weather conditions that put a damper on construction and sales.

Homebuilders have expressed concern about the continued tighter credit conditions, a shortage of building lots, and rising homes prices.

-- Reuters