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Bellway 10-Month Home Sales, Order Book Down; Guidance Remains Suspended

Bellway PLC (BWY.L), a residential property developer, reported Tuesday that it completed the sale of 6,721 homes for the ten months from August 1, 2019 to May 31, 2020, down from last year's 7,674 homes. The sale included 708 which completed on or after March 23, 2020 amid Covid-19 pandemic.

In its trading update, the company said its order book remains substantial, with a value of 1.57 billion pounds as of May 31 comprising 6,038 homes, compared to prior year's 1.64 billion pounds comprising 6,312 homes.

Sales activity has remained restrained since initially closing sales centres, with the net reservation rate rapidly declining to an average of 71 homes per week in the ten weeks from March 23 to May 31. In the same period last year, net reservation rate was 231 per week.

The company said it expects year-on-year sales activity to be severely constrained until a time when 'lockdown' restrictions are further lifted.

The company said its construction activity has recommenced on around 230 sites. All remaining sales offices reopened in England on 1 June, following the success of a trial beginning on May 18.

Further, all furloughed employees have remained on full basic pay throughout April and May and Bellway has no current plans to claim grant using the Government's Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

Looking ahead, Bellway said, "Given the ongoing uncertainty, financial guidance remains suspended, however, the resumption of build programmes should enable Bellway to slowly increase the number of completions throughout the late summer and autumn months."

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