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PHILADELPHIA-A public offering of two million shares of common stock in locally based RAIT Investment Trust, priced at $24.25 a share, is expected to provide the specialty finance REIT with $46.2 million in net proceeds after underwriting discounts. The lead managing underwriters are Arlington, VA-based Friedman, Billings Ramsey & Co. and Minneapolis-based Piper Jaffray & Co. Stifel, Nicolaus & Co., which is based in St. Louis, is co-manager.

Delivery of the proceeds is scheduled for Friday, June 25. The underwriters are granted an over-allotment option of an additional 300,000 shares, exercisable within 30 days, which would add another $6.9 million, raising the tally to $53.1 million. RAIT plans to use the proceeds to repay debt, originate loans, acquire loans, and acquire property interests.

According to a June filing with the SEC, RAIT raised its credit line from $20 million to $30 million. During this month, it also repaid $20.8 million in loans and paid $5.6 million for one property interest.

RAIT trades as RAS on the NYSE. Trading in RAS shares opened on June 23 at $24.21. The 52-week high of $29.55 a share occurred on March 31 this year. On May 10, this year, shares fell to $21.25, a 52-week low.

RAIT focuses on mid-size commercial real estate, providing structured financing, including senior and mezzanine lending and preferred equity investments to private and corporate owners. It also acquires real estate for its own account.

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