Hammerson, the real estate developer, has shrugged off losses elsewhere in the UK property market to post a rare positive move in net asset value thanks to the strong performance of its European holdings. Financial Times, The Times

The property company said the second half of last year saw UK capital values fall sharply, but France, where it does about 30% of its business, performed strongly to help it beat analyst forecasts.

With sector peers such as British Land reporting a fall of almost 17% in NAV per share in the last quarter alone, analysts welcomed the Hammerson results as showing resilience in the face of the broader market downturn.

An adjusted NAV increase of 3% for 12 months to December 31 masks a slump of 5.5% in the second half, however, after 9% growth in the first six months.

John Richards, chief executive, warned there was likely to be further pressure on capital values in the next few months with prices of commercial property were likely to fall by 10% by June, bringing the total decline to 20% in 12 months.