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Simon Property (SPG) Posts Solid Q3 Results, Raises Dividend

Simon Property Group, Inc. SPG, a retail real estate investment trust (REIT), reported third-quarter 2017 funds from operations (FFO) of $2.89 per share, which surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a penny. The FFO per share figure also expanded 7.0% from the year-ago tally of $2.70.

Results highlight improved property performance and growth in revenues. The company also announced a hike in quarterly dividend.

During the quarter, the company posted revenues of $1.4 billion, which nearly came in line with the Zacks Consensus Estimate. It compared favorably with the year-ago figure of $1.36 billion.

Inside the Headline Numbers

For the U.S. Malls and Premium Outlets portfolio, occupancy was 95.3% as of Sep 30, 2017. Base minimum rent per square feet rose 3.3% year over year to $52.42 as of Sep 30, 2017. Further, leasing spread per square foot for the trailing 12-month period ended Sep 30, 2017 increased 11.2% to $7.21.

Total portfolio net operating income (NOI) growth for the nine-month period ended Sep 30, 2017, was 4.8%. Moreover, comparable property NOI growth for the same period came in at 3.6%.

At the end of the quarter, Simon Property had redevelopment and expansion projects, including the addition of new anchors, in progress at 31 properties across the United States and Canada. The company’s share of costs of all new development and redevelopment projects under construction at quarter end was around $1.0 billion.

The company exited the third quarter with cash and cash equivalents of $508.4 million compared with $560.1 million recorded at the prior-year end.

Additionally, as of Sep 30, 2017, Simon had more than $6.5 billion of liquidity. This comprised cash on hand, including its share of joint-venture cash, and available capacity under its revolving credit facilities.

2017 Outlook

Simon Property revised its full-year 2017 FFO per share guidance and expects it to be in the range of $11.17-$11.22 compared with the prior guidance of $11.14-$11.22. This incorporates an expected 3 cents per share negative impact in the fourth quarter as a result of the ongoing repair and restoration work at the company’s two centers in Puerto Rico.

Dividend Hike

Simon Property announced a quarterly dividend of $1.85 per share, marking an increase of 2.8% sequentially and 12.1% year over year. The new dividend will be paid on Nov 30 to stockholders of record on Nov 16, 2017.

Our Viewpoint

We are encouraged with the better-than-expected performance of Simon Property. The company’s diversified exposure to retail assets in the United States and abroad, efforts to support omni-channel retailing, portfolio-restructuring initiatives and healthy balance sheet augur well. Nevertheless, stiff competition from online sales and rise in interest rate pose challenges.

Currently, Simon Property carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Shares of Simon Property have climbed 2.1%, versus the 3.5% loss incurred by the industry in three months’ time.



We now look forward to the earnings releases of other retail REITs like The Macerich Company MAC, GGP Inc. GGP and Federal Realty Investment Trust FRT. Macerich and GGP Inc. are expected to report their figures on Oct 30 and 31 respectively, while Federal Realty is slated to release its numbers on Nov 1.

Note:  FFO, a widely used metric to gauge the performance of REITs, is obtained after adding depreciation and amortization and other non-cash expenses to net income.

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Simon Property Group, Inc. (SPG): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Macerich Company (The) (MAC): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
General Growth Properties, Inc. (GGP): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Federal Realty Investment Trust (FRT): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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