(Update adds pre-market stock movement.)

It's no secret that the homebuilding business has been pretty taxing of late. Case in point is

Lennar

(LEN) - Get Report

, which posted a loss for the second quarter thanks to a swirl of sales declines, charges and writedowns.

Lennar Thursday said it lost $125.2 million, or 76 cents a share, in the quarter, compared with a loss of $120.9 million, or 76 cents, a year earlier. The loss also included a charge of 38 cents a share for valuation adjustments and other write-offs, and another charge of 27 cents a share for a tax asset allowance.

Though CEO Stuart Miller noted that there was a small uptick in new home sales in the second quarter from the first, weak economic conditions continued to challenge the industry. The Miami-based concern said revenue fell 21% to $891.9 million. Still, that's better than the $597.5 million analysts polled by Thomson Reuters had anticipated. Analysts also forecast a loss of 64 cents a share.

New home orders dropped 19% to 3,564 homes, while deliveries fell 18% to 3,149 homes.

"While we are sensing pent-up demand in the market, rising unemployment, increased foreclosures and tighter credit standards continue to present challenges for the industry to generate sales at a more robust pace and at stabilized pricing," Miller said, in a press release. "This combined with a recent spike in mortgage rates has made it difficult to predict when the market will ultimately turn the corner."

On a slightly more upbeat note, the company noted that its cancelation rate shrunk to 15% from 22% in the year-ago period.

After the release of the earnings report, shares in the company spiked in pre-market trading by 38 cents, or almost 5%, to $8.20.

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