McCarthy & Stone says trading ahead on the year

McCarthy & Stone said that, since its last update, trading and other lead indicators are now ahead of the previous year.

"Over the first five weeks of the new financial year, reservations have been stronger and cancellation rates have returned to more normal levels," the company said in a statement.

"New enquiries have increased and first time visitors to our developments have been noticeably ahead of the prior year.

"Consequently, the Group's forward order book, including legal completions since 1 September, is now moving towards a similar level to last year at c.£173 million (2015: £177 million).

"This performance provides some early evidence of improving customer sentiment and a potential return to normal trading conditions. More detail on current trading and outlook will be provided in the full year results statement on 15 November 2016."

The company also said that CFO Nick Maddock has decided to leave the business to take up the position of CFO at SIG plc. A process to identify his successor and ensure a smooth transition was now underway.