Macerich said Wednesday that a key measure of profitability improved in its fourth quarter on better revenue from rent and increased occupancy at its malls.

The real estate investment trust reported that its funds from operations rose to $132.6 million, or 90 cents per share, for the last three months of 2012 from $118.8 million, or 83 cents per share, a year earlier.

Macerich runs 62 shopping centers. They include Tysons Corner Center in Northern Virginia near Washington, D.C., Scottsdale Fashion Square, Queens Center in New York City, Broadway Plaza in Walnut Creek, Calif., and Washington Square near Portland, Ore.

Analysts polled by FactSet predicted funds from operations of 87 cents per share.

Funds from operations, or FFO, adds charges including amortization and depreciation back to net income and is considered a measure of core operations for a REIT.

Net income increased 7 percent to $174.2 million, or $1.27 per share, from $163.1 million, or $1.23 per share, in the prior-year period.

Revenue climbed 15 percent to $251.2 million from $217.8 million.

Revenue from minimum rents rose to $140.2 million from $118.8 million.

For the year, the Santa Monica, Calif.-based company reported FFO of $577.9 million, or $3.99 per share. In the previous year FFO was $399.6 million, or $2.79 per share.

Mall occupancy climbed to 93.8 percent by year’s end, compared with 92.7 percent for the prior year.

Net income more than doubled to $337.4 million, or $2.51 per share, from $156.9 million, or $1.18 per share.

Annual revenue increased 11 percent to $891.9 million from $803.3 million.

For 2013, Macerich Co. anticipates FFO between $3.32 and $3.42 per share.

Analysts expect FFO of $3.36 per share.