What doesn't kill you makes you stronger? Housebuilder shares stage partial recovery

Emma Haslett
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A bricklayer builds a wall at a construction site
Build 'em up: Housebuilder share prices rose today (Source: Getty)

Housebuilders showed that any reaction is a good reaction this morning, after almost all their share prices staged partial recoveries following yesterday's carnage.

FTSE 100-listed Barratt, Berkeley Group, Taylor Wimpey and Persimmon all triggered the London Stock Exchange's circuit breaker yesterday, meaning their shares were suspended from trading for five minutes after they fell more than eight per cent.

This morning things were looking more optimistic, despite hangovers: Barratt was up 2.4 per cent, at 362p, while Taylor Wimpey rose 3.2 per cent to 119.5p and Persimmon rose three per cent, to 1,352p.

Berkeley Group, meanwhile was relatively flat, hovering about 0.1 per cent lower, at 2,339p - despite the best efforts of chairman Tony Pidgley, who spent £800,000 on a five per cent slice of the company yesterday.

Dead cat bounce or something more meaningful? The FTSE 100 was up more than two per cent this morning, after it closed 2.5 per cent lower yesterday.

Meanwhile, sterling edged up 0.25 per cent against the euro, to €1.2028, and 0.6 per cent against the dollar, to $1.3302, despite Standard & Poor's and Fitch both downgrading the UK's credit rating overnight.

"A bounce was overdue, of course, and it doesn’t change the short-term narrative of uncertainty and fear, nor the longer-term bear market in equities that has been ticking along for over a year now," said Chris Beauchamp, senior market analyst at IG.

"Nonetheless, the sight of so many major companies trading at remarkably low multiples, such as Next and Prudential on 10 times earnings, and the juicy dividend yields on offer, has clearly been too much for some investors to resist.

"Clearly, things that are cheap can get cheaper, but a lot of people with the stock market equivalent of an Amazon wish list will have gone shopping in the past couple of days, and may continue to do so."