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Retail woes hit Landsec as FY losses widen

By Frank Prenesti

Date: Tuesday 14 May 2019

Retail woes hit Landsec as FY losses widen

(Sharecast News) - A "significant" fall in the value of Land Securities' retail assets led to wider full year pre-tax losses as retail failures increased vacancies and the company warned of no let up in the near term.
The company reported a pre-tax loss of £123m compared with a loss of £43m a year earlier. The full year dividend was increased 3.1% to 45.55p.

Assets declined in value by 4.1% or £557m compared with a £91m decline last year. EPRA net assets per share in fell 4.6% to 1,339p as Brexit worries continued to hit home and investment appetite "evaporated" the company said.

Revenue, or underlying pre-tax, profit was £442m, up 8.9% from £406m driven by higher net rental income and reduced costs, in particular interest expense.

"Against a backdrop of political uncertainty and retailer difficulties, this has been a challenging year for Landsec. In general, the values of our London offices have held up well while retail assets have had a difficult year," the company said in a statement.

"Retailers have faced margin pressure from a variety of rising costs, weakening demand and a continuing shift to online. This has led to administrations and company voluntary arrangements , the impact of which can be seen in our results."

"We see no near-term improvement in retail market conditions, with CVA activity set to continue. Rental values are likely to decline further in shopping centres and retail parks, though we expect continued rental growth in outlets and select leisure destinations."

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