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On Mar 4, 2014, shares of Toll Brothers Inc. (TOL - Analyst Report) reached a 52-week high of $39.95, eventually closing at $39.51. The closing price represented a year-to-date return of around 14.4%.

Share Price Drivers

Share price of Toll Brothers has been gaining momentum since the release of its first quarter results on Feb 25. The share price was also driven by the release of housing data.

This Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) company has delivered strong results despite weakness in order growth for the past three quarters.

Toll Brothers reported adjusted earnings of 25 cents per share in the first quarter of fiscal 2014, surpassing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 18 cents by 39%. Adjusted earnings increased significantly from 3 cents in the prior-year quarter on the back of top-line growth.

The company reported revenues of $643.7 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2014, up 52.0% year over year, driven by aggressive pricing.

Recent data from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Census Bureau showed that sales of newly built, single-family homes rose 9.6% in Jan 2014, which is the strongest since July 2008. Sales growth was driven by the release of pent up demand for new homes.  By region, sales increased 10.4%, 11.0% and 73.7% in the South, the West and the Northeast, respectively. Toll Brothers draws a significant amount of revenue from these regions. During first quarter 2014, the company reported 23.4% of homebuilding revenues from South, 29% from West and 20% from North.

Other Stocks to Consider

Investors interested in the homebuilding sector can also consider stocks like William Lyon Homes (WLH), Taylor Morrison Home Corporation (TMHC - Snapshot Report) and Lennar Corp. (LEN - Analyst Report). While William Lyon and Taylor Morrison sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Lennar carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).


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