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NorthStar Realty Finance's CEO Discusses Q2 2012 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

Additionally, certain non-GAAP financial measures will be discussed on this conference call. Our presentation of this information is not intended to be considered in isolation or as a substitute for the financial information presented in accordance with GAAP. Reconciliations of these non-GAAP financial measures to the most comparable measures prepared in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles can be accessed through our filings with the SEC at

With that, I am now going to turn the call over to our Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, David Hamamoto. David?

David Hamamoto

Thanks Al, and thanks everyone for joining us. In addition to Al, I am joined today by Dan Gilbert, Co-President and Chief Investment Officer; Debra Hess our CFO and Ron Lieberman, our General Counsel.

During the second quarter of 2012, mixed U.S. economic indicators along with heightened concerns our Europe’s sovereign debt crisis resulted in slower than expected economic growth in U.S. Despite the overall uneven economic recovery, we continue to see a steady positive trend in commercial real estate fundamental and investor interest in this sector remains strong, supported by the extended low interest rate environment.

Liquidity in commercial real estate debt market continues to improve amplified by $12 billion of non-agency CMBS issuance during the second quarter, which was double the $6 billion of issuance during the first quarter. And it appears we're on-track for full-year 2012 estimated issuance of $35 billion to $40 billion which is in line with expectation.

Throughout the first half of 2012, we continue of focus on steadily expanding our overall platform and making accretive investments with expected total returns in excess of our current cost of capital. Last week, we announced our fourth consecutive increase to our common dividend, representing a 60% increase in cash distributions to our shareholders over the past 12 months. As we look ahead to the remainder of 2012 and beyond, we’re well positioned to continue executing our business strategy and we will continue to evaluate over dividend on a quarterly basis.

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