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Liberty Property Trust's CEO Discusses Q1 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

Stocks in this article: LRY

Let me conclude by giving you our sense of where the economy and the real estate markets are. The economy continues a long but frustratingly slow progress back, whereby a couple of good economic reports we get 0:00:43.7 5 like the March numbers appears. Our sense is that there is a very strong level of uncertainty among business decision makers that prevent major employment moves. This has had the greatest impact on office demand as evidenced by the national office vacancy rates remaining at 16% in the first quarter. Industrial demand is stronger as evidenced by the 20 basis point decline in the national vacancy rate to 13.4% in the first quarter.

The net result is that the economic and real estate environments are where we thought they would be for the year, somewhat slightly better than last year. But we feel very good about where Liberty is in this context, on plan for the year with a further strengthening in financial position and with a more valuable and realigned portfolio. And with that let me turn it over to George.

George Alburger

Thank you Bill. FFO for the first quarter was $0.68 per share, the operating results for the quarter include $2.2 million in lease termination fees. Our guidance for the year is that lease termination fees would be in the $0.04 to $0.06 per share range. Similar to previous years, G&A expense is high for us in the first quarter due to the accelerated vesting of long-term incentive compensation. The accelerated vesting resulted in $3.2 million more G&A expense in the first quarter of 2012 compared to the expected quarterly expense for the remaining three quarters of the year.

On February 14 we redeemed $32.5 million of the 6.65% preferred units for $26 million and on March 27 we redeemed $95 million of the 7.45% preferred units at par. FFO for the quarter includes the $6.5 million redemption discount reduced by the write-off of $2.8 million in origination costs. We are revising our 2012 earnings guidance upwards by $0.05 because of the $3.7 million net discount which was recognized in the first quarter and because of the positive impact this redemption will have on earnings for the balance of the year.

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