Taylor Wimpey shares jump as housebuilder maintains expectations despite uncertainty

James Warrington
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Home Ownership Falls To Its Lowest Level In 30 Years
Taylor Wimpey's total house completions increased three per cent in 2018 (Source: Getty)

Taylor Wimpey saw its share price rise today as it remains on track to meet its full-year expectations, despite the slowing housing market.

In an eagerly-anticipated trading update the housebuilder said total house completions increased three per cent in 2018 to 14,947, while total order book value was £1.78bn, up from £1.62bn the same time last year.

Chief executive Pete Redfern said: “I am pleased to report another year of strong performance, in line with our expectations. Despite wider macroeconomic uncertainty, the housing market remained stable during 2018 and we had a good trading performance.”

But the FTSE 100 firm said it remained mindful of the political uncertainty that has prompted a slowdown in the UK property market.

UK house prices defied expectations to record a 1.3 per cent rise in December, according to figures from Halifax, but analysts have warned caution among home buyers continues to impact the market.

Despite this, Taylor Wimpey said it anticipates full-year results in line with its expectations, aiming to return £600m in dividends to shareholders in 2019. Shares in Taylor Wimpey rose more than six per cent this morning.

“We will continue to closely monitor market conditions for any potential impact on customer confidence in light of the wider political and economic uncertainty,” the company said.

Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell, said: “In the background, it has to be said that trading doesn’t look bad with average selling prices flat and volumes a little higher.

“Yet the company’s flagging of ‘increasing customer caution’ in London and the south east at the end of last year does suggest prices could come under pressure in 2019.”