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Foxtons pipeline stronger than last year, well-prepared for Brexit challenges

A Foxtons estate agent sign is seen outside a branch in west London

(Reuters) - Real estate agent Foxtons <FOXT.L> said on Friday its 2020 sales pipeline was stronger than last year's, and it was prepared for further challenges in the UK property market during the Brexit transition period.

London's long-bullish property market has been sluggish in many areas over the past year, as uncertainty regarding Britain's decision to leave the European Union has put off consumer spending. However, the housing market showed signs of a modest pick up in January after the decisive December election.

"Our sales pipeline is currently ahead of last year, however we are well prepared for further challenging conditions in the sales market in the run up to Brexit," said Chief Executive Officer Nic Budden.

The company reported a 30% plunge in adjusted core profit for 2019 as Britons bought and sold fewer homes and as its letting business was hurt by a ban on tenant fees.

Adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization, on a pre-IFRS 16 basis, fell to 2.5 million pounds in 2019, from 3.6 million pounds a year earlier.

"Selling or finding a property is more challenging than ever before, whilst landlords are facing increasing legal risks through tighter regulation," said Budden.

(Reporting by Yadarisa Shabong in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila and Vinay Dwivedi)