Hovnanian sales fall in the first quarter
K. Hovnanian, a national home builder with operations in 19 states, reported wider losses in the first quarter on an unsteady housing market.
The company reported losses of $130.9 million, wider than the $54.6 million in losses reported in the same period last year.
Sales were $1.09 billion, down 6.4 percent from $1.165 billion in the same period last year.
In the first quarter, the company delivered 3,604 homes, an increase of 10.3 percent from 3,266 home in the first quarter of 2007, not including unconsolidated joint ventures.
“Market conditions remain challenging across many of our markets,” said company president and CEO Ara K. Hovnanian. “We continue to focus on reducing our inventories, maximizing cash flow and shrinking our overhead to ensure that we properly manage the difficult market conditions we currently face.”
The company recorded $94 million in pre-tax, land-related charges, an amount virtually unchanged from similar land-related charges of $93 million recorded in the same period last year.
Hovnanian is headquartered in Red Bank, N.J.
KB Home to pull out of certain U.S. markets
Los Angeles-based home builder KB Home will be pulling out of Albuquerque, Chicago and the mid-Atlantic markets, according to a report by the Associated Press.
The company said that current conditions in the housing market are too difficult and has decided not to build any homes in those areas for now.
AKB Home spokesperson told the AP that the pullout would be gradual, as the company plans to complete its current projects and will still honor warranties on homes it has already built.
The company reported a net loss of $929 million for 2007 with revenues of $6.4 billion, down 31.6 percent from 2006.
Candleholders recalled at Pier 1
Pier 1 Imports has announced a voluntary recall of some candleholders that have been said to cause a fire hazard, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.
According to the Commission, the candleholders can heat up and cause the tealights to burn unexpectedly fast and with a higher flame height than normal, posing a fire hazard. The items were manufactured in China.
Fort Worth, Texas-based Pier 1 Imports has received seven reports of high flames. No injuries have been reported.
About 18,000 units were sold at Pier 1 Imports stores nationwide from June 2007 through December 2007 for $6 to $25.