House builder Barratt Developments have promised to repay the government the furlough money they claimed whilst their staff were unable to work.
Barratt have said that their finances are strong enough to repay the money of around their 6,700 workers.
The house builder topped up the pay for their furloughed staff, which represents around 85% of the workforce.
The company are starting a new financial year with “cautious optimism,” and all sites reopened by 30 June, said chief executive David Thomas
Thomas said, “Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, the group was delivering a strong year of progress on both volume and margin.
“The pandemic has caused significant disruption, but our highly skilled and experienced team have shown incredible resilience, flexibility and commitment, both through the peak of the crisis and in the careful reopening of our sites.
“Now, with our construction sites operational across the UK, we begin the new financial year with cautious optimism, supported by our strong forward order book and our well capitalised balance sheet.”
AJ Bell investment director Russ Mould said, “Any kind of optimism is welcome in the current climate, cautious or otherwise, so the tenor of today’s trading update from Barratt Developments struck a chord with the market.
“This optimism is not founded on thin air. The company has a growing order book, has seen high customer interest levels since the reopening of its sales centres, and it now has all its sites up and running.
“There was some bad news to balance out the good in Barratt’s statement – inevitably completions were down in the 12 months to the end of June and the average asking price also fell.
“Dividends remain off the table, but it doesn’t appear as if the market was expecting anything different on that score.”
Shares were up by 6.2% on Monday morning after the announcement.