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UPDATE 1-KB Home posts profit due to higher pricing, shares soar

(Adds details, share price)

March 19 (Reuters) - KB Home, the fifth-largest U.S. homebuilder, reported a quarterly profit compared with a year-earlier loss as it closed deals at higher prices, sending its shares up 7.5 percent in premarket trading.

The company said its overall average selling price rose 12 percent, with the West Coast outpacing the Southwest, Central and Southeast regions.

KB Home's net income was $10.6 million, or 12 cents per share, in the first quarter ended Feb. 28 compared with a loss of $12.5 million, or 16 cents per share, a year earlier.

New home orders, a key indicator for builders who do not book revenue on a house until the sale is completed, rose 6 percent to 1,765 units.

Shares of the Los Angeles-based company were trading at $19.01 before the bell. They closed at $17.68 on Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange.

(Reporting by Sweta Singh; Editing by Savio D'Souza)

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