- Residential and industrial real estate investor St. Modwen Properties warned of a substantial fall in first-half earnings, owing to the Covid-19 crisis.

Adjusted EPRA earnings for the six months through June were seen falling to around £4m-to-£5m, down from £16.2m on-year.

'The disruption from the Covid-19 crisis will lead to a reduction in housebuilding profits and retail rent in the first half of 2020,' the company said.

St. Modwen Properties it also anticipated a reduction in the valuation of its residual retail assets and surplus residential land.

The company said its focus remained on recycling capital into higher-returning assets, principally its industrial and logistics pipeline.

'Albeit not fully insulated, half-year valuations in this part of the business are expected to be more resilient,' it added.

Cost-cutting measures, including a reduction in executive salaries and 'selective redundancies' were expected to result in savings equivalent to around 15% of last year's business unit operating and central administrative expenses.

In the homes business, the company restarted work on its sites in the middle of May and sales centres at our 22 sales-active sites had since reopened.

However, a delay in production meant that, at 280, completed unit sales for the half year were down 32% on-year.

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