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Liberty Property Inks Lease Deals

Zacks Equity Research

Liberty Property Trust (LPT) disclosed the signing of leases for a total area of 94,400 square feet with Atlas Box and Crating Company at Keystone Business Park in Morrisville, NC. With this, the park is now fully occupied.

Specifically, the long-term lease for 62,400 square feet of space at 619 Distribution Drive in Keystone Business Park has been renewed by Atlas Box and Crating Company. Apart from this, the company inked a new lease for an additional area, spanning 32,000 square feet, at 627 Distribution Drive inside the park.

Favorably positioned near the I-85 corridor, the Keystone Business Park draws much attention and helps in the expansion and new development moves of its customers. Across the portfolio, Liberty enjoys ownership of over 6.1 million square feet of multi-tenant industrial space in the Carolinas.

In a separate development, the company announced the closing of 7 lease deals in Arizona in first-quarter 2014. The deals include leasing of a total space of 425,000 square feet and reflect high levels of activity. This comprises 3 new leases and 4 renewals and include tenants like WageWorks, Inc. (WAGE) with which the company signed a deal for its Class A office development – Liberty Center at Rio Salado – in Tempe.

As a matter of fact, Liberty Property is aiming to expand its presence in the growing markets of the nation. The Phoenix office market is currently improving, with rising demand for space from the corporate houses. The industrial market too is recuperating well with strength in the economy.

Liberty Property is efficiently capitalizing on this trend and the lease deals reflect the growing demand for its properties. However, interest rates are expected to increase, which may in turn hurt the rate-sensitive business of the company to some extent in the long run.

Liberty Property currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Investors interested in the REIT industry may also consider Cousins Properties Inc. (CUZ) and Public Storage (PSA). Both stocks carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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