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Abbey Annual Profit Drops As House Sales Fall Due To Covid-19 Crisis

Fri, 10th Jul 2020 10:29

(Alliance News) - Abbey PLC said Friday its annual profit fell substantially on declining revenue, as the residential housing developer reported a challenging year, particularly in the UK.

For the year to the end of April, Abbey's pretax profit was EUR33.0 million, down 38% from EUR53.0 million the year before.

This was partly due to a slight rise in administrative expenses to EUR12.8 million from GEUR12.2 million, as well as a loss in the fair value adjustment in investment properties to EUR218,000 from a gain of EUR7,000 the prior year.

Meanwhile, revenue declined by 21% year-on-year to EUR182.2 million from EUR230.9 million, as the number of homes sold totalled 490, down from 579 sales the year before. Rental income for the period dipped to EUR1.1 million from EUR1.2 million.

Despite the drop, Abbey said its overall results were "satisfactory", considering that trading in the last quarter of the year was significantly hurt by the Covid-19 outbreak and well as material supply interruptions.

Abbey proposed a dividend of 11 cents per share, in line with the year before.

Looking ahead, the company said that in the UK production and sales activity has resumed in May albeit at reduced levels. Sales have held up well due to the Help to Buy programme, while forward orders remain normal and production is steady.

"The group is trading profitably in the current year. Higher sales completions in Ireland and Czechia should ensure that overall house sales volumes at least exceed this year. The UK performance will critically depend on confidence and employment levels in the wider economy. The curtailing of the UK 'Help to Buy' programme will introduce another significant headwind to our prospects. Covid 19 has undoubtedly been a severe blow to the economy and to our business. The longer term impact is unclear," said Executive Chair Charles Gallagher.

Shares in Abbey were untraded on Friday in London, last quoted at 1,186.00 pence.

By Dayo Laniyan; dayolaniyan@alliancenews.com

Copyright 2020 Alliance News Limited. All Rights Reserved.

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