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Mack-Cali Realty Corp. (CLI - Analyst Report) disclosed the fourth-quarter 2013 leasing details of its office and office/flex commercial real estate assets in Northern and Central New Jersey. In particular, this real estate investment trust (REIT) leased 484,975 square feet of space in this portfolio during the said quarter.

As a matter of fact, Northern and Central New Jersey region has recorded the second-highest quarterly leasing volume for office space in four years at the end of 2013, as per a report by Cushman & Wakefield. We expect these leasing transactions of Mack-Cali to boost its strong tenant base and prove accretive to its earnings going forward.

In particular, during the fourth-quarter, Mack-Cali penned a new lease deal for 66,999 square feet at 3600 Route 66 in Neptune with Gannett Satellite Information Network, Inc, a subsidiary of renowned newspaper publisher – Gannett Co., Inc. (GCI - Analyst Report). Also, Mack-Cali renewed its lease with Groundwater & Environmental Services, Inc for 30,070 square feet of space at 1340 Campus Parkway in Wall Township. Both the buildings are fully leased.

In addition, Mack-Cali inked a lease renewal with Franklin Credit Management Corporation during the fourth quarter for 33,866 square feet of space at 101 Hudson Street (83.4% leased) in Jersey City. The company also leased 24,838 square feet of space at 20 Commerce Drive (99.3% leased) in Cranford to a full-service insurance brokerage firm, Herbert L. Jamison & Co., L.L.C.

In total, Mack-Cali executed lease deals for 718,588 square feet of space at its consolidated in-service portfolio in fourth-quarter 2013. As of Dec 31, 2013, the consolidated in-service portfolio of the company was 86.1% leased. The persisting weakness in the company’s suburban office markets continues to impact its business.

However, despite a revenue beat, Mack-Cali’s fourth-quarter results came a penny short of the Zacks Consensus Estimate on higher expenses. The company also lowered its 2014 outlook.

Mack-Cali currently carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). Investors interested in the REIT-Equity Trust – Other industry may consider stocks like Cousins Properties Incorporated (CUZ - Analyst Report) and Public Storage (PSA - Analyst Report). Both stocks carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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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