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Abbey's half-year profits fall 40pc

Home builder Abbey has warned that conditions remain difficult, but it still declared a dividend even as pre-tax profits slumped 40pc to €3.3m in the first half of its financial year.

Delivering results for the six months to the end of August, Abbey said that it completed 146 sales in the period, 118 of them in the UK. Of the remainder, 19 were in Ireland and a further nine in Prague.

That was down from the total of 172 homes it sold in the first half of its last financial year, when it managed to offload 33 properties in Ireland.

Turnover at the group, which is headed by executive chairman Charles Gallagher, slumped 27pc to €27m in the first half of this year. That figure is 46pc lower than the turnover recorded in the first half of 2009.

Abbey said that trading in the UK so far this financial year has been "satisfactory". But the company noted sluggish autumn sales. "Selective discounts have been necessary to generate activity," it said.

Most of the properties it sold in Ireland are located at a development in Kilcoole, Co Wicklow. Abbey acquired 152 development plots during the latest period.

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