UK builder Taylor Wimpey said housing market fundamentals remained solid as it reported a 5% increase in housing completions during 2017.
Amid a strong demand backdrop, the company said its average selling price increased 4% during the year to £264,000.
Other operational highlights
- Group will deliver an improved operating profit margin of 21.2% (2016: 20.8%)
- Expects return on net operating assets of over 32% (2016: 30.7%)
- Total dividend in FY 2018 of about £500 million, subject to shareholder approvals
- Ended 2017 with an order book valued at £1,628m, down from £1,682m at end 2016
- Build cost inflation was between 3-4%
- Land market remains positive: short-term landbank at end 2017 is 75,000 plots (76,000 at end 2016)
- Strategic landbank rises to 117,000 plots (108,000 end of 2016)
- Net cash of £512m
The company said it would start 2018 in a strong financial and operational position and expected to achieve further growth and performance improvements during the year.
"We go into 2018 with positive momentum and expect to achieve further progress against our medium-term targets," said chief executive Pete Redfern (left).
"Our focused strategy of managing the business through the cycle, while also driving further operational improvements, will enable us to continue to deliver long term value for shareholders."
Investors were unimpressed with the trading statement, however, and the shares were sold down 3.4% to 201.8p on the London Stock Exchange.
Pictures courtesy of Taylor Wimpey website