HONG KONG, March 25 (Reuters) - China Vanke Co , the country’s No. 2 property developer by sales, reported a 22.8 percent rise in 2018 core profit on Monday helped by higher margins.
Its results highlight overall strength in earnings for the sector, with most of China’s major developers such as Country Garden reporting record profits recently, although analysts expect profit growth to slow in the second half.
China Vanke said core profit, which excludes revaluation gains and non-recurring items, totalled 33.5 billion yuan ($5 billion) for 2018. That was slightly below an average forecast of 34.86 billion yuan from 18 analysts, according to Refinitiv SmartEstimate.
The developer said its net profit rose 20.4 percent to 33.8 billion yuan, while revenue increased 22.6 percent to 297.7 billion yuan. The results came out after the stock market had closed.
Analysts say developers’ profit growth may slow from the second half as more expensive land costs eat into margins on the back of slowing national sales.
China’s property sales by floor area fell 3.6 percent year-on-year in the first two months of 2019, while new home prices rose in February at the slowest pace in 10 months in a sign of slackening demand as the economy cools further. ($1 = 6.7132 Chinese yuan renminbi) (Reporting by Clare Jim; Editing by Himani Sarkar and Susan Fenton)