Duke Realty sees higher profit on property sales

Duke Realty Corp. reported higher profit in the third quarter, mostly due to gains on sales of depreciable properties.

The Indianapolis-based real estate developer said Wednesday afternoon that profit increased to $76.4 million, or 22 cents per share, compared with $61.5 million, or 18 cents per share, in the same quarter of 2014. Property sales totaled $238 million, Duke said.

Funds from operations for the quarter hit $101.3 million, or 29 cents per share, compared with $105.6 million, or 30 cents per share, in the year-ago period. Duke attributed the decline to the dispositions, partially offset by improved property performance and new developments.

The average estimate of 11 analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for FFO of 29 cents per share.  FFO is a common measure of performance for real estate investment trusts.

Duke’s third-quarter revenue fell 10.4 percent, to $234.5 million, compared with $261.8 million in the year-ago period.

Rental income dipped less than 1 percent, to $200.9 million, while general contracting and service-fee revenue fell 43.8 percent, to $33.6 million.

Duke saw its portfolio occupancy rate hold steady at 95.8 percent compared with the previous quarter.

The company started six projects totaling 941,000 square feet in the period.

Duke’s shares closed Wednesday at $21.06 each prior to the earnings announcement, up 1.1 percent for the day.

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