Westfield profit down 6.7%

Shopping centre giant Westfield Group has suffered a 6.7 per cent slide in its full year profit.

Westfield Group made a net profit of $1.6 billion for the 2013 calendar year, down from $1.76 billion in 2012.

Meanwhile, Westfield Retail Trust, which owns a 50 per cent stake in the group's Australian shopping centres, recorded a net profit of $777 million, down from $831 million a year ago.

Westfield Group chief executive officers Peter Lowy and Steven Lowy said they were pleased with the results, saying they reflected growth in speciality sales and comparable net operating income in each of the markets the company operates in.

"During the year, we successfully continued the strategic repositioning of the group by divesting non-core assets, introducing further joint ventures, investing in our development activity and announcing the acquisition of the remaining 50 per cent interest in the Westfield World Trade Center in New York," Peter Lowy and Steven Lowy said in a statement.

Net property income for the year was $2 billion, consistent with the previous year. Adjusting for the asset divestments during 2012 and 2013, net property income increased eight per cent, the group said.

Management fee income increased nine per cent to $140 million and project income was up five per cent to $204 million.

Comparable net operating income in the US for the 12 months was up 4.7 per cent; United Kingdom income increased 4.3 per cent; and Australia's was two per cent higher.

Shareholders will receive an interim, fully-franked, dividend of 51 cents, a three per cent rise on the previous year.

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