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Ahead of the Bell: Mack-Cali down on dividend cut

NEW YORK (AP) -- Shares of Mack-Cali Realty Corp. slid in premarket trading Tuesday after the company said it would cut its second-quarter divided by a third to save cash.

Mack-Cali, a real estate investment trust that owns office space, late Monday said it's trimming the payout for investors to 30 cents from 45 cents. The company wants to use the cash it saves to invest in apartment buildings as demand for office space is weak.

Mack-Cali focuses on office properties but has lately expanded into investing in residential buildings. The company owns or has interests in 270 office space properties and nine residential properties in the Northeast.

The office market is weak, says Citi analyst Michael Bilerman, who has a "Neutral" rating on Mack-Cali. But the housing recovery that began a year ago appears to be gaining momentum.

Shares fell $1.89, or 6.7 percent, to $26.25 in premarket trading Tuesday. The stock has gained nearly 8 percent in 2013 and almost unchanged over the past 12 months.