Similarly, results at Persimmon threw the group into the spotlight, with shares positively screaming "buy me" – yet investors still scampered away into the night. Persimmon's pre-tax profit for 2002 was up 42% to £268m on 2001. The result? The firm's share price fell 5.4% to 416.75p.
Housebuilders generally fared poorly as the market was hit by jitters over the impact of probable war with Iraq. Westbury fell 6.5% to 296p, Wilson Bowden dropped 5.6% to 758.5p and Wilson Connolly slid 4% to 155.5p.
It's the same old story. When the FTSE 100 index suffered its 11-day tumble in January, housebuilders were among the first hit.
Housebuilders have long moaned that the City undervalues them – surely their remarkable 2002 results should win them some support?