12 Mar 2014

Metlifecare expects $34-38m profit

2:16 pm on 12 March 2014

Metlifecare expects an underlying profit of between $34 million and $38 million for the 12 months ending June, should current trading trends continue, it says.

The retirement village operator reported a $15.3 million underlying profit for the six months to December.

The year-earlier annual net profit of more than $120 million was boosted by one-off gains from buying a couple of other retirement village operators and from rising values of its existing properties.

The company's guidance for full-year net profit is about what analysts expect.

Craigs Investment Partners analyst Stephen Ridgewell, who is forecasting an underlying result of about $35 million, said he upgraded his full-year forecast after the first-half results.

These included several modest surprises, including a slightly better development margin of 14 percent compared with his 12 percent expectation and slightly lower operating and interest costs.

Forsyth Barr analyst Jeremy Simpson said Metlifecare's second half would be stronger than the first because of higher-priced new sales from its Poynton development. Metlifecare has sold 24 of the 55 new units.