HORSHAM, PA-Toll Brothers Inc.’s preliminary fiscal fourth-quarter report portrays continuing softness in the housing market with little light on the horizon. Revenues dropped 10% to $1.8 billion, compared with $2 billion for the same quarter of 2005.

The backlog at the end of fourth quarter was almost $4.5 billion, down 25% compared with just north of $6 billion for the parallel 2005 time frame. Signed contracts plunged 55% to $709.6 million in the most recent quarter, compared with nearly $1.6 billion in the same quarter a year ago.

Furthermore, the quarterly contract total was negatively impacted by higher-than-normal cancellations. Cancellations represented 37% of contracts signed in this fourth quarter, compared with 18% of those signed in this year’s third quarter. Nearly 25% of the cancelled contracts in fourth quarter occurred in two markets: Orlando and Northern California.

In light of these slides, the company has reduced its land position by approximately 6,500 lots. It ended the quarter with approximately 74,000 lots, down 19% from the approximately 91,200 lots it owned in mid-year.

Full year 2006 “has certainly been a very tough and challenging year,” says Robert Toll, chairman and CEO, in a statement. “Atypically,” he notes, the current weakness in the housing market is taking place during low interest rates and low unemployment. “We believe weak buyer confidence is keeping many customers on the sidelines.”

He remains hopeful that a market recovery is imminent. “The market should improve more rapidly than is generally anticipated,” he predicts, once the inventory overhang is absorbed and consumer sentiment turns positive.

The earnings report is preliminary and unaudited. Final data will be presented on Dec. 5. Shares of TOL stock traded between $27.36 and $28.24 a share on the NYSE on Nov. 7, the day the report was released. This compares with a 52-week high of $39.98 a share on Jan. 11, 2006 and a 52-week low of $22.22 a share on July 18, 2006.

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Once you are an ALM digital member, you’ll receive:

  • Unlimited access to GlobeSt and other free ALM publications
  • Access to 15 years of GlobeSt archives
  • Your choice of GlobeSt digital newsletters and over 70 others from popular sister publications
  • 1 free article* every 30 days across the ALM subscription network
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM events and publications

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?


© 2024 ALM Global, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Request academic re-use from www.copyright.com. All other uses, submit a request to [email protected]. For more information visit Asset & Logo Licensing.


Join GlobeSt

Don't miss crucial news and insights you need to make informed commercial real estate decisions. Join GlobeSt.com now!

  • Free unlimited access to GlobeSt.com's trusted and independent team of experts who provide commercial real estate owners, investors, developers, brokers and finance professionals with comprehensive coverage, analysis and best practices necessary to innovate and build business.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and GlobeSt events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including ThinkAdvisor.com and Law.com.

Already have an account? Sign In Now
Join GlobeSt

Copyright © 2024 ALM Global, LLC. All Rights Reserved.