Real Estate

Country Garden shares hit record low after profit warning as debt fears loom

Country Garden Holdings Co.’s Fengming Haishang residential development in Shanghai, China, on Tuesday, July 12, 2022.
Qilai Shen | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Shares of beleaguered Chinese real estate company Country Garden Holdings slumped to an all-time low on Friday as the company issued a profit warning a day earlier.

The stock fell to an intraday low of 90 Hong Kong cents, extending the company’s losing streak after eight sessions of losses in the past nine days. This included a 14.3% plunge on August 8.

The sell-off in Country Garden shares also spilled over to the wider property sector.

The broader Hang Seng Mainland Property Index was 1.49% lower in afternoon trade on Thursday. Shares of counterpart Longfor Group were down 1.9%, while China Resources Land saw its shares slide about 1%.

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In a filing to the Hong Kong exchange, the company said it expects a record a net loss of about 45 billion yuan to 55 billion yuan (or about $6.24 billion to $7.63 billion) for the six months ended June. That’s compared with the 1.91 billion yuan profit for the same period last year.

Country Garden said it’s “mainly due to the decrease in gross profit margin of the real estate business and the increase in impairment of property projects as a result of the decline in sales in the real estate industry.”

Expected foreign exchange losses also contributed to the drop in net income, it said.

Attributable sales from January to July is estimated to come in at 140.8 billion yuan ($19.51 billion) —that’s a year-on-year decrease of 35%, and a 61% drop compared to the same period in 2021.

Earlier this week, Country Garden saw a sell-off after reports said the real estate firm had missed two bond coupon payments totaling $22 million over the weekend.

An investor relations representative for Country Garden did not deny the media reports, but also did not clarify the company’s payment plans, according to Sandra Chow, co-head of Asia Pacific Research for CreditSights, which is a unit of Fitch Group.

— CNBC’s Evelyn Cheng contributed to this report

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