* Earnings miss expectations by a penny a unit
* Acquisitions, fees boost results
* Units rise slightly in Toronto
TORONTO, Feb 14 Funds from operations (FFO) rose
16 percent at RioCan Real Estate Investment Trust in
the fourth quarter, Canada's largest retail landlord said on
Thursday, boosted by property acquisitions and lease
FFO rose to C$116 million ($116 million), or 39 Canadian
cents a unit, at the shopping mall owner from C$100 million, or
36 Canadian cents a unit, in the same quarter of 2011.
Analysts had expected FFO of 40 Canadian cents a unit,
according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Investors tend to focus on FFO as a measure of the financial
health of REITs rather than net income, which can be volatile
due to property sales and debt restructurings.
The company's units, which have risen a modest 3.6 percent
over the past year, were up 23 Canadian cents at C$27.64 on the
Toronto Stock Exchange at midday on Wednesday.
RioCan counts among its tenants Wal-Mart Stores Inc,
Canadian Tire Corp Ltd, Loblaw Cos Ltd and
The company said it acquired interests in 31 income
properties in Canada and the United States during the quarter,
adding 2 million square feet of retail space to its portfolio.
For the year, it bought interests in 43 properties, adding 3.5
million square feet.
Lease cancellation fees added C$4 million to the company's
Overall occupancy was 97.4 percent at Dec 31, down slightly
from 97.6 percent at Dec 31, 2011.