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Barratt have record half-year

Countrywide share Barratt homes’ news of their record half-year

Recent scepticism over successes in the residential market in the face of Brexit have not prevented Barratt Homes announcing a record first-half profits.

Britain’s largest house-builder has reported that it’s pre-tax profits had risen by nearly 7 per cent to £342.7 million, on revenue of close to £2 billion, in the six months to December 31. It completed and sold 7,324 homes during the period, 2 per cent up on the same time last year. It also said that it would pay another special dividend of £175 million in November 2019, matching the £175 million special dividend that it plans to pay out in November this year.

The Leicestershire based house-building giant annually delivers more than 3,000 homes more than its competitors, from 1 bedroom flats to 6 bedroom large family-size houses. A yearly number of 17,000 homes are constructed by Barratt.

Investors have been growing increasingly concerned that housebuilders are reaching the peak of what they can deliver in terms of profit growth. As a result, their shares have been volatile in recent months. Barratt’s shares hit a post-recession high of 682¾p last October, but have been falling since then. They rose 5¼p to 567½p yesterday.

David Thomas, Barratt’s CEO, said: “With good consumer demand, a healthy forward order book and a robust balance sheet, overall we have had a strong first half and we continue to deliver against our operational and financial objectives.”

News of healthy demand, an increase in profits and another special dividend payout will be a boost for Barratt and the wider housebuilding sector at a time when the residential market appears to be cooling, particularly in London.

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