Stockland profit falls in 'challenging environment'

Property developer Stockland says it expects a difficult 2013 because of the uncertainty in the housing market.

The company says profit for this year fell by more than a third to $487 million in what it describes as tough conditions.

"This is a reasonable result in what continues to be a very challenging operating environment," said the developer's managing director Matthew Quinn.

"Our strategy of delivering high quality and affordable residential, shopping and retirement living for middle Australia continues to prove sound in the current market, with solid results in our retail and retirement living businesses and strong residential sales volumes in a very soft market.

Stockland says margins in its home building business came under pressure because of weak market conditions.

However, its retirement units business saw strong sales and a significant lift in profit.

Stockland says much of the decline in its statutory net profit was due to mark to market adjustments on financial instruments - its underlying profit was down around 7 per cent to $676 million.

The company's revenue fell 21 per cent to $2.2 billion.

Stockland has announced a 12 cent unfranked final dividend.

The company's shares had fallen 3.2 per cent to $3.30 by 12:00pm (AEST).

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