The chairman of the Fort Worth, Texas, home builder D.R. Horton said foreclosures and tighter mortgage lending standards are factors hurting his company's performance.
In the first quarter, ended Dec. 31, of its fiscal 2011, Horton lost $20.4 million, the company said Thursday.
The loss included a pretax charge of $8.4 million for inventory impairments and land option cost writeoffs.
Net income for the same period a year earlier was $192 million, including a tax benefit of $149.2 million.
Home sales closed totaled 3,637, compared with 5,529 the year earlier.
"While our year-over-year comparisons for net sales orders are very difficult for the next two quarters, we do expect to see an increase from the sales levels we achieved in the December quarter," Chairman Donald R. Horton said in a press release.
The home builder Ryland Group Inc. also reported a loss for its most recent quarter.
The Calabasas, Calif., company said late Wednesday that it lost $19 million in the fourth quarter, compared with net earnings of $39 million the year earlier.
The builder's quarterly results included a pretax charge of $15.4 million, it said, for inventory and other valuation adjustments, writeoffs and loan-loss provisions.
NVR Inc. in Reston, Va., meanwhile, reported Thursday that its fourth-quarter net income was $59 million, off 3% from the year earlier.