The West

Building products maker Boral has upgraded its forecast for its underlying first-half profit on the back of cost saving measures and improved trading conditions in the lead-up to Christmas.

Boral now expects its net profit for the six months to December 31, excluding one-off items, to be about $52 million, it said.

That is up from its previous forecast of about $35 million, which it issued in November.

"The improvement on Boral's previous guidance primarily reflects better than anticipated trading conditions in Australian construction materials underpinned by favourable weather conditions," the company said in a statement.

Early benefits from a major restructure also contributed to the guidance upgrade, Boral said.

The company's restructure will involve 1,000 job cuts in the current financial year, including the recently announced 700 redundancies from its Australian operations.

The restructure, expected to result in annual savings of $90 million when completed, was launched in response to a prolonged downturn in housing construction.

The West Australian

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