November 1, 2012 / 9:01 PM / 5 years ago

UPDATE 2-Vornado Realty Trust third-quarter FFO rises

NEW YORK, Nov 1 (Reuters) - Vornado Realty Trust, owner of U.S. office and retail properties, on Thursday reported higher funds from operations despite continued weakness in its Washington, D.C., office buildings.

Vornado posted third-quarter funds from operations (FFO) attributable to common shareholders of $251.0 million, or $1.34 per share, compared with $195.1 million, or $1.05 per share, for the prior year’s quarter.

Adjusted for non-comparable items, FFO was $212.2 million, or $1.14 per share, versus $209.7 million, or $1.13 per share, a year ago.

FFO, a measure of REIT performance, removes the profit-reducing effect that depreciation has on earnings.

The company reported its quarterly results after the market close, when Vornado shares were up 72 cents, less than 1 percent, at $80.93. Share were down after-hours at $80.70.

Vornado, with office and retail property in New York, Washington and Chicago, has seen its stock underperform that of its peers for years. The company has been working to focus more on its street-level retail properties and its office buildings while selling interests outside of that.

Following the quarter, the company agreed to sell two malls to Macerich and, in smaller dealls, several office buildings.

Vornado also owns stakes in Toys “R” Us as well as J C Penney Co Inc, which it has said it wants to keep. During the quarter, the company posted a mark-to-market gain of $4.34 million for its 10.7 percent stake in Penney, compared with a loss of $37.5 million in the year earlier quarter.

For New York office buildings that Vornado has owned at least a year, earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, or EBITDA, rose 0.6 percent on a cash basis from a year earlier.

Vornado continued to feel the pullback by the U.S. federal government, particularly from the 2005 Defense Base Closure and Realignment Commission, with EBITDA for properties in the Washington, D.C., area falling 2.3 percent.

EBITDA for its retail properties rose 1 percent from a year earlier, but EBITDA from its Merchandise Mart showroom properties fell 23 percent.

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