(Reuters) - Homebuilder D.R. Horton Inc (DHI.N) reported a better-than-expected profit as it sold more homes at higher prices in quarter ended June.
Demand for homes has remained strong despite a recent rise in mortgage rates as a shortage of homes available for sale has enabled builders to raise prices.
D.R. Horton, which sells homes priced between $100,000 and $600,000, said average selling price rose 15 percent in the third quarter.
Orders — a key indicator for builders, who do not book revenue until they finish a house — rose 12 percent to 6,822 homes.
Net income fell 81.5 percent to $146 million, or 42 cents per share, from $787.8 million, or $2.22 per share, a year earlier.
Analysts on average had expected earnings of 34 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
The year-ago quarter included a $716.7 million tax benefit.
Third-quarter homebuilding revenue rose 47 percent to $1.64 billion.
D.R. Horton shares, which have gained about 7 percent value this year, closed at $21.20 on the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday.
(Corrects fifth paragraph to say net income fell 81.5 percent, not 98 percent)
Reporting by Mridhula Raghavan in Bangalore; Editing by Joyjeet Das