Vornado's first quarter hurt by JC Penney stake

Mon May 6, 2013 6:29pm EDT

(Reuters) - Vornado Realty Trust (VNO.N) said a key metric of real estate investment trust performance fell in the first quarter, hurt by its investment in J C Penney Co Inc (JCP.N) and weakness in its Washington office portfolio.

The company, owner of office buildings and retail properties chiefly in New York and Washington, on Monday reported first-quarter funds from operations attributed to common shareholders of $201.8 million, or $1.08 per share, compared with $348.5 million or $1.82 per share in the year-ago quarter.

Excluding items such as more than $85 million in losses and impairments relating to its investment in Penney, severance costs and a $59.6 million gain from a litigation settlement, the company reported FFO of $213.3 million, or $1.14 per share, compared with $186.7 million, or 98 cents per share in the year-ago quarter.

The company has been paring down its disparate investments, selling non-core properties and 43 percent of its stake in Penney. At the end of the first quarter, its total economic net loss in Penney was $227.1 million.

For its core New York office properties the company has owned for at least a year, Vornado said cash earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) rose 9.1 percent, while those in Washington fell 9.4 percent compared with a year earlier.

EBITDA for its retail properties rose 2.2 percent.

Shares of Vornado closed at $87.84, up 1 percent or 91 cents, and were unchanged after hours.

(Reporting by Ilaina Jonas; Editing by Phil Berlowitz)

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