Thursday, July 31, 2008

MBA Issues Statement on FASB's Delayed Implementation of Changes to FAS 140

WASHINGTON, D.C-- Kieran P. Quinn, CMB, Chairman of the Mortgage Bankers Association, has commented on the decision by the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) to delay, by one year, implementation of a forthcoming proposal that would bring sweeping changes to securitization accounting.

The amendments to FAS 140 call for banks and finance companies that currently do not consolidate the issuing entities used in securitizations, commonly referred to as qualified special purpose entities (QSPE), to consolidate some or all of those entities. The affected transactions may include mortgage, credit card, student and retail auto loans.

Quinn issued the following statement:

"While we continue to have grave concerns about the proposed changes to FAS 140, we do appreciate the extended time from FASB to allow markets to adjust to and evaluate the implications of the proposed changes. While I know that FASB delayed implementation of the new rules reluctantly, I want to thank them for recognizing the importance of allowing the markets to analyze and respond to the new changes.

"Consolidation of securitization QSPE is likely to swell the balance sheets of the affected entities, adversely impact financial ratios, financial covenant performance and regulatory capital tests; and bring a new chill to credit markets at the exact time when all market participants are working to relieve the current credit crunch. We look forward to working with the FASB to implement the changes and make this transition as smooth as possible."

CONTACT: Jason Vasquez, (202) 557-2950,

The Dikman Company negotiates sublease at Westshore Corportate Center

TAMPA, FL -- The Dikman Company announces Albertelli Law has subleased 12,487 SF of space at Westshore Corporate Center (top right photo) from Lennar. Ben Dikman of The Dikman Company represented Albertelli Law.

Albertelli Law is a full-service corporate and real estate law firm. The Firm represents developers, landowners, investors and banking institutions in real estate related transactions for institutional and private lenders nationwide.

CONTACT: Bob Dikman, ALC, CRB, CCIM, SIOR 813/251-5288.

National Retail Properties Shows Increased Second-Quarter Operating Results

ORLANDO, FL., July 31, 2008 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- National Retail Properties, Inc. (NYSE: NNN), a real estate investment trust, today announced operating results for the quarter ended June 30, 2008, including a 26.7% increase in revenues and a 6.4% increase in Funds From Operations ("FFO") per share compared to the same period for 2007.

Additionally, the company announced a 32% increase in revenues and a 5.2% increase in FFO per share for the six months ended June 30, 2008 compared to the same period for 2007.

For a complete copy of the company's release, showing all second quarter results, please contact
Kevin B. Habicht, (top right photo) Chief Financial Officer of National Retail Properties, Inc., +1-407-265-7348

Granite Announces Second Quarter 2008 Results

WATSONVILLE, CA/PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Granite Construction Incorporated (NYSE:GVA) has announced net income for the second quarter ended June 30, 2008 of $25.6 million or $0.68 per diluted share, compared with net income of $43.8 million, or $1.05 per diluted share, for the same period last year.

Operating income for the quarter was $45.4 million, compared with $66.9 million a year ago. Total revenues for the quarter were $694.3 million compared with $770.9 million a year ago.

William G. Dorey,(top right photo) Granite President and Chief Executive Officer, stated, "While we did not match last year's record setting second quarter results, I am pleased with how our business performed this quarter. We are executing well in today's highly competitive environment which is a testament to our people and the strength of our business model."
General and administrative expenses for the second quarter ended June 30, 2008 totaled $65.8 million or 9.5% of revenue compared with $65.1 million or 8.4% of revenue for the second quarter of 2007.

"We are focusing on reducing our general and administrative costs by instituting a series of cost control initiatives, improving our processes and more efficiently utilizing our staff throughout the organization. Although we are making progress on these efforts, we do not expect to see a reduction in general and administrative expenses on an absolute dollar basis until 2009," Dorey said.

For a complete copy of the release, please contact Jacque Fourchy of Granite Construction Incorporated,+1-831-761-4741

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Announces its 100th Hotel in China

Starwood Solidifies Its Position as Number One Operator of International Upscale Hotels in China; Underscores Aggressive Expansion Worldwide

SINGAPORE--- Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) marks a milestone in its aggressive growth in Greater China announcing its 100th hotel there, with the signing of the Sheraton Beijing Dongcheng Hotel. (top right photo)

As the first international hotel chain to enter China when the historic Great Wall Beijing Sheraton Hotel opened in 1985, Starwood today is the largest international upscale hotel company in China and continues to grow its footprint there with the expansion of its brands including Sheraton, Westin, Le Meridien, St. Regis, Luxury Collection, aloft, Four Points by Sheraton and W hotels in established and emerging cities as well as resort destinations.

“With strong domestic demand, an increasing affinity for global brands and international inbound travel on the rise, our opportunity in China is perhaps unsurpassed anywhere in the world,” said Simon Turner (middle right photo), President, Global Development for Starwood Hotels & Resorts.
“What’s more, by 2020, China will generate over 100 million outbound trips a year, more than triple its current output, making it one of the largest origins of outbound travel in the world. As the Chinese travel abroad, they look for brands they know, and therefore Starwood’s development in China today, has significant implications for our hotels worldwide.”

A dominant player in the upper-upscale and luxury hotel market in China, Starwood is poised to grow in other segments as well, and the company will debut its new select service brand, aloft, in China this September with the opening of the aloft Beijing, Haidian. Designed with the DNA of W Hotels, aloft targets younger, style-conscious consumers.

“We expect healthy expansion as we launch aloft throughout China and continue to expand our established upper upscale and luxury brands in various Chinese cities where we are currently under penetrated,” commented Miguel Ko,(middle left photo) President of Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Asia Pacific. “Starwood continues to win many new hotel projects in China and this is largely due to the confidence the development community has in our lifestyle brands, noted innovations and consistently strong delivery of results in the region.”


Hwee-Peng Yeo, Director, Corporate Communications, Starwood Asia Pacific Hotels & Resorts Ltd, 9 Temasek Boulevard, Suntec City Tower 2, #24-02, Singapore 038989.
Tel : +65 6335 4837; Cell : +65 9768 6087; +65 9248 0424 Fax : +65 6335 4820;