Homebuilder

Toll Brothers

(TOL) - Get Report

said fourth-quarter home building revenue was $691 million, a decrease of 41% from a year earlier, and net signed contracts declined by 27% to $266.7 million as cancelations rose because of the recent financial crisis.

Backlog at Oct. 31 declined 54% to $1.33 billion, Toll said in a press release Tuesday. Cash at the end of its fiscal fourth quarter was $1.63 billion compared with $1.5 billion at the end of the third quarter.

"Results of this crisis -- accelerating fears of job losses, a large decline in consumer spending, a significant capital crunch, increased credit market disruption, and plummeting stock market values -- all contributed to drive our cancelations up to 233 units, and drive home buyer confidence and our traffic and demand down to record lows," said Robert Toll, chairman and CEO.

Toll estimates it will incur fourth-qurter pretax writedowns of $120 million to $220 million related to its operating communities, land and land options. The company said it isn't "comfortable" providing revenue or earnings guidance for the coming year because of "uncertainty surrounding sales paces, cancellation rates, market direction, unemployment trends and numerous other aspects of the overall economy."

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