Beazer Homes narrows 4Q loss with 33% more orders
Beazer Homes USA Inc. (BZH) narrowed its fiscal fourth-quarter loss on 23% more closings and 33% more new orders. The homebuilder reported a loss of $43.2 million, or 58 cents a share, for the three months ended Sept. 30, compared to a loss of $59.5 million, or 81 cents a share in the year-ago period. For the fiscal year ended Sept. 30, Beazer Homes reported a loss of $204.9 million, or $2.77 a share, compared to a loss of $34 million, or 57 cents a share, for its fiscal 2010. Annual revenue fell 25% to $742 million from $991.2 million a year ago. Fourth-quarter revenue rose almost 25% to $334.9 million from $268.7 million. The company recorded 1,006 new orders during the fourth quarter, up 33% from a year earlier, while closing 1,376 homes during the three months, which was 23% higher than the year-ago fourth quarter. Beazer Homes said the cancellation rate for the quarter rose to 34.2% from 33.2% last year. "Our new home orders showed encouraging signs of improvement in the second half of fiscal 2011," said President and CEO Alan Merrill. "While we acknowledge the many challenges facing the industry, we believe we have the people, the communities and the homes to allow us to generate increased new home orders and deliveries in fiscal 2012 as we pursue a deliberate climb back to profitability," he said. Write to Jason Philyaw. Follow him on Twitter: @jrphilyaw.