UK housebuilder Persimmon (PSN.L) posted a decline in its first-half revenue and profit on Tuesday as a decision to invest in work in progress as it held back some sites for later sales release lowered overall sales volumes.
The company, which was founded in 1972 and is one of the UK’s leading residential property companies, reported revenue of 1.75 billion pounds ($2.11 billion) for the six months ended June 30, down 4.5% from the corresponding half-year period of the prior year.
New housing revenues came to 1.65 billion pounds, down from 1.74 billion pounds a year earlier as the group sold 7,584 new homes — down from 8,072 a year earlier — at an average selling price of 216,942 pounds, up from 215,813 pounds a year earlier.
Also feeding into the results was the company’s decision to invest an additional approximate 140 million pounds in work-in-progress as it held back some sites for later sales release, which reduced the group’s overall sales volumes. Underlying diluted earnings per share came in at 130.2 pence, down from 131.5 pence a year earlier.
In its outlook, the company said consumer confidence in Britain is benefiting from high levels of employment, low-interest rates and a competitive mortgage market. It plans to start construction on approximately 85 new outlets through the second half of the year.