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PulteGroup Inc. ($23.95 0.6%) swung to profit on 15% higher revenue, pushed by higher average selling prices and more orders for new homes.
For the second quarter, Pulte reported a profit of $42.4 million, or 11 cents a share, compared with a loss in the year-ago quarter of $55.4 million, or a loss of 15 cents a share. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial Network estimated earnings would come in at 5 cents a share.
Revenue was at $1.07 billion in the second quarter, compared to $927.2 million in the second quarter of 2011.
"With each passing quarter, we grow more confident that new home demand has found its footing and is moving along a path toward a gradual recovery," Chief Executive Richard J. Dugas Jr. said.
In its earnings report, the company reported that orders for new homes jumped 32% from a year earlier, substantiating signs that the market is moving into recovery. Home prices were up nationally in May from April, marking the fourth-straight monthly increase.
Average second-quarter sale prices were up 8% to $268,000, and the backlog ending June 30 was $2.2 billion — up 38% from the same time last year. Closings rose to 3.8 million units from 3.6 million units a year earlier.
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