Shares of Ryland Group Inc., one of the nation's 10 largest home builders, rose more than 7% on Thursday after the company reported strong fourth-quarter earnings fueled by the hot housing market.
Calabasas-based Ryland Group said net income rose 50% to $67.5 million, or $2.50 a share, from $44.9 million, or $1.61, in the year-ago period. Revenue was up 12% to $929.7 million.
For the year, net income hit $185.6 million, or $6.64 a share, a 40.5% increase from the $132.1 million, or $4.63, generated in 2001. Annual revenue rose 4.7% to $2.88 billion. The company also increased its profit target for 2003.
The quarterly and annual results easily beat Wall Street expectations. Ryland Group shares closed at $39.60, up $2.63, on the New York Stock Exchange.