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Builders lower expectations

WASHINGTON -- Responding to rising mortgage rates and consumer resistance to high housing prices, single-family home builders say they are adjusting their market expectations lower.

A monthly measure of builder confidence compiled by the national Association of Home Builders and Wells Fargo Bank showed builder sentiment dropped by eight points to a level of 60 during November. Dave Wilson, president of the builders' trade group, said, "We're well aware that some slowing of demand is inevitable following the record-breaking activity that has prevailed for some time."

But no huge drop is in the cards, said Wilson, "and it's most likely that we're engaged in an orderly cooling process that will lead to somewhat lower home sales and production in the future."

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