10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (Apr. 3, 2015)

10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (Apr. 3, 2015)


  1. Sovereign Fund Buying Slides as Oil Falls and Real Estate Peaks “Asset purchases by sovereign wealth funds dropped by more than 80 percent in the first quarter, with experts blaming the fall on lower oil revenues and fears that popular investments such as prime real estate may be overpriced. Thomson Reuters data shows that sovereign wealth funds, which invest windfall revenues from oil and other exports for future generations, were involved in 27 deals worth a total of $5.1 billion.” (Reuters)
  2. Stock Traders Daily Suggests Selling/Shorting Real Estate “Stock Traders Daily has issued a sell rating on Real Estate. Our analysis suggests that a combination of three factors has contributed to what now appears to be excessive valuation in wealthier real estate markets, and although the same irrational exuberance does not seem to exist in lower income areas, the trickle up impact of these recent pro-real estate policies will eventually trickle-down to those areas as well as they are unwound.” (Seeking Alpha)
  3. Retail Landlords Notch a Solid Quarter “Asking rents at strip and enclosed malls increased by 0.5% in the first quarter from the prior quarter, according to real-estate research firm Reis Inc. Shopping-center asking rents are up 1.9% from a year ago, while mall asking rents are up 1.8% annually.” (The Wall Street Journal)
  4. Potential, Peril, Abound in Sears-GGP Deal “Some CRE players might be reminded of the decline and fall of the Mervyn’s department store chain, beginning with an LBO in 2004, and ending in 2008 with allegations that the LBO partners had jacked up rents on the chain’s stores, essentially stripping the company’s real estate. Savvy observers should be watching closely to see whether the rents under the pending Sears sale-leasebacks will be at market rates, or at the kinds of (reportedly) above-market rates that helped kill off Mervyn’s.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  5. SEC Drops Investigation of Inland American “It's been a good news, weird news kind of week for Inland American Real Estate Trust Inc. and its shareholders, Investment News reports.The giant nontraded real estate investment trust, with $7.5 billion in total assets at the end of 2014, last Wednesday said it had received a clean bill of health from the Securities and Exchange Commission.” (Crain’s Chicago Business)
  6. Real Estate Investing: The Best and Worst Markets for Property Taxes “Depending on where the property is, paying property taxes on real estate you own can be a curse or a blessing. For real estate investors, it’s normally the second biggest fixed cost they need to consider, next to their monthly mortgage payments, when calculating potential cash flow on investment properties.With a wealth of new data added to its database, RealtyTrac recently released the results of its first-ever study of property taxes, called the ‘U.S. Property Tax Rates Report for 2014.’” (U.S. News & World Report)
  7. Bank of China Taking Less Space in its Tower “Bank of China will take up nearly half of its 30-story, 7 Bryant Park, a move from original plans to take the whole building, The New York Post reported. The bank will occupy 40 percent of the 471,000-square-foot tower, which it bought late last year $600 billion, according to The Post. About 282,600 square feet of the building, which is between West 39th and West 40th Streets, will be leased out.” (Commercial Observer)
  8. Transformation in Store for L.A.’s Historic Core “A developer plans to build a 33-story apartment tower in a historic neighborhood in downtown Los Angeles, adding its $200-million project to a handful of planned high-rises poised to alter the city's skyline. The project, proposed by Chicago-based Equity Residential, would replace a taco shop and a surface parking lot at 4th and Hill streets in historic downtown, just below Bunker Hill. It underscores the city center's resurgence as an attractive place to live and the revitalization of a historic stretch once beset by drugs and crime.” (Los Angeles Times)
  9. International Discount Grocer Lidl to Establish Corporate Offices in Arlington “The real estate arm of Germany-based discount grocer Lidl plans to establish a major corporate presence in Arlington that will give it a foothold in the D.C. region as it rolls out a significant expansion in the U.S., according to sources familiar with the deal. MGP Retail Consulting LLC, Lidl's real estate affiliate, acquired a condominium interest in National Gateway I at 3500 S. Clark St. for $56.6 million and will occupy a majority of the roughly 217,500-square-foot building.” (Washington Business Journal)
  10. The Guy Trying to Buy Revel Casino May Have a Secret $500 Million Plan to Rescue Atlantic City “The Florida developer trying to buy Atlantic City's former Revel casino said Thursday that he's interested in acquiring other properties in and around the resort town. Glenn Straub was seeking bankruptcy court approval Thursday to buy Revel. Straub's Polo North Country Club has an $82 million deal to buy Revel that is being considered by the court.” (Associated Press)
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