Aug 4, 2009
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Macerich second-quarter FFO falls

Aug 4, 2009

NEW YORK, Aug 4 (Reuters) - Macerich Co (MAC.N), which owns malls chiefly in U.S. western regions, reported quarterly funds from operations that just missed Wall Street expectations, as occupancy fell.

The Oaks, a Macerich mall - Photo: www.macerich.com

FFO, a performance measure of real estate investment trusts, fell to $59.9 million, or 67 cents per share, from $99.6 million, or $1.12 per share, a year earlier, the company said on Tuesday 4 August.

Excluding a charge of $27 million for noncore assets, FFO was 98 cents a share, missing analysts' forecasts of 99 cents, according to Reuters Estimates.

The U.S. recession has hindered consumer spending and hurt retailers. For Macerich, that translated into a 7.8 percent fall in sales per square foot to $428 for the quarter.

The company said portfolio occupancy had slipped 2.5 percentage points to 90.5 percent at the end of June from a year earlier.

Investors have been concerned about the Santa Monica, California, mall owner. Last month, the company, which owns 72 U.S. malls, acted on its plans to reduce its debt load by selling noncore assets and entering into joint ventures.

It netted $150 million by selling a 49 percent interest in its Queens Center in New York City to Cadillac Fairview, a wholly owned subsidiary of Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan Board, and used the proceeds and those from other noncore asset sales to pay down $200 million from its unsecured term notes.

Macerich also secured a series of mortgages, which when completed will leave it with less than $60 million of maturities remaining for the year.

Shares of Macerich on Monday 3 August closed at $20.04 on the New York Stock Exchange, and were inactive in premarket trade on Tuesday 4 August.

(Reporting by Christopher Kaufman and Ilaina Jonas; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn and Gerald E. McCormick)

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