Barratt reports weak autumn

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The Independent Online

A combination of weak consumer confidence and constrained mortgage lending continues to stand in the way of a significant recovery in the housing market, Barratt Developments said yesterday.

The housebuilder said the autumn selling season proved "weaker than anticipated" because customers took longer to commit to house purchases.

On a weekly basis, Barratt saw 0.45 net private reservations per active sales site between July and 14 November. That was down from 0.55 during the same period last year, something the company blamed on weaker consumer sentiment.

Total forward sales were in line with 2009 at £871m. Underlying selling prices also remained stable.

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