Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Toll Brothers to Buy Seattle Builder

Toll Brothers Inc. said Monday that it is acquiring Seattle builder CamWest Development LLC for an undisclosed cash price.

The deal, which moves the luxury developer into the Pacific Northwest, is a rare example of an acquisition in the hard-hit home-building sector, which continues limping through the worst housing downturn in decades.

But Toll, based in Horsham, Pa., has weathered the downturn better than its peers. So far this year, its shares have fallen less than 1%, making it the sector's strongest performer. Shares of Hovnanian Enterprises Inc., another public builder, have fallen nearly 70% year to date.


Friday, November 11, 2011

Brookfield Asset Management Profit Doubles After Power-Generation Gains

Brookfield Asset Management Inc. (BAM/A), the Toronto-based investment firm that manages about $150 billion, said third-quarter profit more than doubled on gains in power generation and commercial-property leasing.

Net income attributable to shareholders rose to $253 million, or 36 cents a share, from $112 million, or 16 cents, a year earlier. Cash flow from operations fell 32 percent to $241 million, the company said today in a statement.

Brookfield, led by Chief Executive Officer Bruce Flatt, focuses on property, infrastructure and renewable power and has sought to buy assets from troubled European companies. The firm raised $6.1 billion in capital in the quarter.


Carlyle Cuts Fees to Sell New Fund

Carlyle Group, the large private-equity firm that is preparing for a public share listing, has had to cut fees and offer other unusual incentives to lure investors to a new $2.3 billion real-estate fund.

The fund, which is about to close, is one of the largest since the property bubble burst in 2008. But Carlyle's aggressive sales tactics reflect the reluctance of big pension funds to put new money into higher-return, higher-risk real-estate funds after suffering sharp losses during the financial crisis.

Carlyle has been offering large investors annual management fees of as little as 0.75% of assets, half the 1.5% industry standard, say people familiar with the matter. Carlyle also has raised the bar that must be cleared before the firm can share in the fund's profits, known in the industry as a hurdle rate or preferred return.