Real estate firm sees earnings, revenue rise while debt falls

JACKSON — EastGroup Properties’ profit rose in the first quarter as revenues rose and debt payments fell.

The real estate investment trust said quarterly profit rose 32 percent to $7.2 million, or 24 cents per share in the three months ended March 31. That’s up from $5.4 million, or 19 cents per share, in 2012′s first quarter.

Quarterly revenue rose 4 percent to $48.3 million.

The company said it started work during the quarter on a total of five new warehouses in San Antonio, Houston, Orlando, Fla., and Phoeniz, Ariz., estimated to cost $28.5 million. The company is working on a total of 16 warehouses worth $85 million in those markets. After the quarter ended, EastGroup spend $5.7 million to buy land for up to six warehouses in Charlotte, N.C.

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