Belfast Telegraph

McCarthy & Stone profits hit by housing market slowdown after Brexit vote

Profits at McCarthy & Stone have taken a Brexit hit after the retirement home builder was stung by a slowdown in the housing market following last year's referendum.

The group said pre-tax profits slumped 25% to £21.8 million in the six months to February 28, with trading "constrained" by a lower forward order book as a result of the market uncertainty following the Brexit vote.

Revenue also fell by 5% to £238.2 million, although the firm added that sales momentum has increased during the last five weeks, with the total forward order book running only 1% behind last year.

Chief executive Clive Fenton said: "We have made solid progress during this half year despite the headwinds created by the lower forward order book brought into the year and the weighting of expected completions from higher margin new sites into the second half of the year.

"Trading conditions have remained stable during the period and underlying reservation rates continue to keep pace with the prior year despite the lower number of sales releases during the period."

McCarthy & Stone said full year results remain on track to meet market expectations.

The Dorset-based group confirmed that profits will be weighted towards the second half due in part to the lower forward order book brought into the year as a result of the Brexit slowdown.