Taylor Wimpey said it was on track to meet its expectations for the full year as UK housing market conditions remained positive in the second half. "While we are alert to potential political and economic risks, demand for new housing remains high across the UK and market conditions are favourable," chief executive Pete Redfern said. "Notwithstanding the recent small increase in the base rate, we have continued to see stability in trading patterns." The company expects to deliver an increase in its annual operating profit margin of over 30%, compared to 20.8% last year. It also confirmed that it will pay total dividends in the 2018 financial year of around £500 million, subject to relevant shareholder approvals. "We reiterate our intent to make further material capital returns in 2019 and beyond, and we will provide further details at our strategy say next year," the company said. Sales rates for the year to date have continued to be strong, at 0.81 sales per outlet per week, up from 0.75 last year, the company said. For the second half of the year to date, sales rates are 0.71, up slightly from 0.70 in the previous year.
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