Pulte posts third-quarter profit as new home orders rise
(Reuters) - PulteGroup Inc (PHM.N), the second largest U.S. homebuilder, reported a higher-than-expected quarterly profit and a sharp rise in new orders as housing demand rebounded.
The company's new home orders, a key metric that determines housing demand, rose 27 percent to 4,544 homes while the value of new orders rose 43 percent to $1.3 billion.
Chief Executive Richard Dugas said he expected ever-higher rental rates, record low interest rates and limited housing supply to continue to drive demand.
Lennar Corp (LEN.N), the third-largest U.S. homebuilder, reported a four-fold jump in quarterly profit last month on strong orders.
Pulte, one of the most diverse U.S. homebuilders, reported net income of $116.6 million, or 30 cents per share, for the third quarter, compared with a net loss of $129.3 million, or 34 cents per share, a year earlier.
Revenue rose 12 percent to $1.23 billion.
Analysts on average had expected earnings of 20 cents per share on revenue of $1.41 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Pulte's shares closed at $17.45 on Wednesday on the New York Stock Exchange.
(Reporting by Bijoy Koyitty in Bangalore; Editing by Supriya Kurane and Don Sebastian)
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