Persimmon CEO to step down in December

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Persimmon has announced CEO Jeff Fairburn will step down at the end of the December – that’s at the request of the company, following ongoing criticism about his pay.

The news came as the group restated its positive outlook for the year in a trading statement this morning.

Forward sales are 9% ahead of the same period last year, standing at £987m. Persimmon said prices remain strong, but no average figure was given.

Investment in the landbank is ongoing, with over £180 million being spent on 4,750 plots of land during the period.

Sophie Lund-Yates, Equity Analyst, Hargreaves Lansdown commented: “Jeff Fairburn’s unexpected and reluctant exit goes to show external influences aren’t always a friend. Pressure over pay has clearly tipped the scales.

“Conditions outside Persimmon have bolstered group performance – it has been enjoying considerable buoyancy aids including various Help to Buy and deposit boosting savings schemes such as Help to Buy ISA and Lifetime ISA. It also continues to benefit from the wider market of low interest rates and good mortgage availability which feed into the top line.

“Plus it’s that time of year when last minute movers push to get settled before the festive season, so an uptick in sales isn’t unusual.

“Not to take away from Persimmon’s success, the proof will be in the pudding at January’s full year announcement, where further evidence of operational, rather than external tailwinds would go down a treat.”

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