Housebuilder reveals a rise in completions of 1.8% but says private completions have dropped 5.5% in last year

Housebuilder Barratt announced its 14th consecutive year of growth in completions and pre-tax profit in its trading update.

The company expects results for the year ended June 30 2006 to be in line with expectations and predicts that although future interest rates remain uncertain, it is confident it will continue to perform well in the second half of the year.

The company revealed that forward sales at July 1 2006 increased to £845m, the second highest level it has ever achieved.

Barratt announced its total completions have risen by 1.8% compared to last year although private completions dropped by 5.5%. It also announced that its number of plots has risen since last year from 61,000 to 66,500.

Barratt issued its trading update ahead of preliminary results which will be announced on September 27 2006.

Shares rose 7p this morning to 939.5p.