posted an increase in first quarter profit on Wednesday, beating analysts' consensus by 5 cents, due to strength in its homebuilding and mortgage lending businesses.
In the quarter ended March 31, the Denver-based company earned $37 million, or $1.36 a share, compared with $32.3 million, or $1.16 a share, in the comparable quarter. Analysts were expecting $1.31 a share.
"Both our homebuilding and mortgage lending businesses contributed new company highs for first quarter operating profits on the strength of record home closings and mortgage loan originations," said Larry A. Mizel, MDC's chief executive.
Shares were climbing recently 1.8% to $42.49 on the news.
Revenue was $570 million, compared with $456 million in the year-ago period.
The company had first-quarter home sales revenue of $554 million, 24% higher than revenue of $445 million in 2002. But home gross margins were 22.8%, compared with 23.4% for the first three months in 2002.
Mizel was positive on 2003 results: "With our first quarter performance, a backlog of 5,300 homes and more than 200 active subdivisions in some of the best markets for homebuilding in the country, we are positioned to meet our goals for 2003 of closing more than 10,500 homes and achieving new company milestones for revenues and net income."