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CB Richard Ellis net income rises 31%

February 07, 2007|From Bloomberg News

CB Richard Ellis Group Inc., the largest commercial real estate broker by market value, said fourth-quarter earnings climbed 31% on increased demand for office and retail space in the U.S., Europe and Asia.

Net income rose to $125.1 million, or 53 cents a share, from $95.4 million, or 41 cents, a year earlier, the El Segundo-based company said.

Revenue increased 36% to $1.41 billion.

Analysts in a Bloomberg survey estimated profit at CB Richard Ellis of 55 cents a share for the quarter.

"Worldwide economic expansion and increased employment rolls have produced strong demand for commercial space," Chief Executive Brett White said. "Rental growth is accelerating as market fundamentals continue to improve."

CB Richard Ellis and its biggest competitor, Chicago-based Jones Lang LaSalle Inc., profited last year from low vacancy rates that pushed office and retail rents higher. In the U.S., the cost of prime downtown offices has risen 18.2%, according to brokerage Colliers International. Service-sector companies such as insurers and banks continued to add jobs in December, increasing demand.

The company issued earnings after the close of regular U.S. trading. Its shares closed up 6 cents at $38.48.

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