Westfield America Trust today announced a distribution of $222.8 million for the half year to 30 June 2002, which represents 7.35 cents per unit, an increase of 8.9% per unit over the previous corresponding period. This distribution is in line with that foreshadowed in January of this year.
The distribution includes a one-time capital payment of $59.7 million (equivalent to 1.97 cents per unit), which comprises an amount of $47.7 million to offset the dilutionary effect of receiving the proceeds of various capital raisings prior to the settlement of the Rodamco North America (RNA) acquisition, and an amount of $12.0 million in respect of the write off of the TrustÂ's investment in MerchantWired LLC (MW) (referred to below).
The tax-advantaged component of the cash distribution of 7.35 cents per unit is approximately 60% inclusive of the capital payment.
The TrustÂ's profit after tax, which includes the MW write off, for the half year ended 30 June 2002 was $163.1 million, which represents 5.38 cents per unit. The underlying US dollar earnings were converted into Australian dollars at an average exchange rate of US$0.5756, being the rate achieved after the impact of currency hedging.
The profit increase reflects strong operational results, the impact of various capital transactions and approximately two months contribution from the RNA and Jacobs properties.
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