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10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (December 24, 2015)

10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (December 24, 2015)


  1. 15 Cities with the Best Job and Housing Prospects“The good news: the job market is getting tighter every day. The not-so-good news: so are housing options. But job search site Indeed and have created a resource that shows where job seekers can get the best of both worlds. They came up with a list of the hottest job markets ranked by housing affordability.” (MarketWatch)
  2. Lender Discrimination May Be Pushing Black Churches Into Bankruptcy “Of the 654 religious congregations to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection between 2006 and 2013, 60 percent had black pastors or predominantly black membership, according to a just-published paper by Pamela Foohey, an associate professor at the Indiana University Maurer School of Law. Meanwhile, black churches make up only 21 percent of U.S. congregations, according to a 2012 analysis. The large number of reorganizations may be the result of black churches paying higher rates for real estate loans.” (Bloomberg)
  3. Bernie Sanders: To Rein In Wall Street, Fix the Fed “The recent decision by the Fed to raise interest rates is the latest example of the rigged economic system. Big bankers and their supporters in Congress have been telling us for years that runaway inflation is just around the corner. They have been dead wrong each time. Raising interest rates now is a disaster for small business owners who need loans to hire more workers and Americans who need more jobs and higher wages. As a rule, the Fed should not raise interest rates until unemployment is lower than 4 percent.” (The New York Times)
  4. Conn’s CEO Eyes 500-Store Opportunity “Conn’s recently opened its 100th store in Las Vegas, but CEO Norm Miller is convinced the retailer could eventually operate as many as 400 to 500 stores nationwide by providing quality, value priced merchandise and convenient financing options to the millions of Americans with less than perfect credit. Miller joined the company in September 2015 and to capitalize on the growth potential he’s intent on establishing what he calls the right foundation for growth.” (Chain Store Age)
  5. Developers Close Deal That Allows Brooklyn’s Tallest TowerDevelopers Michael Stern and Joe Chetrit have completed their previously announced $90 million purchase of the century-old Dime Savings Bank building in downtown Brooklyn, allowing them them to build the city's tallest tower outside Manhattan. The pair bought 9 DeKalb Ave. from JP Morgan Chase, which had used the space as a bank branch before putting the property on the market a year ago. As Crain's previously reported, the developers entered into a contract this past summer to purchase the landmarked 100,000-square-foot Beaux Arts building, which was completed in 1908.” (Crain’s New York Business)
  6. Edition Hotel Project in West Hollywood Gets $260 Million in Financing “L.A.'s newest trendy boutique hotel — a luxurious 190-room property with not one but two rooftop pools — is expected to rise from the Sunset Strip this spring now that the developers have received $260 million in financing. The project from New York developer Witkoff Group will be the first West Coast outpost for the Edition hotel brand, a collaboration between hospitality giant Marriott International and former nightclub impresario Ian Schrager, a pioneer of the boutique hotel business.” (Los Angeles Times)
  7. Mall of America Protest Was “Decoy” for Airport Block “The Mall of America was used as ‘a decoy’ to start a protest that quickly moved to Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport and blocked a terminal on a busy holiday travel day, one organizer of the demonstration said. Protesters hoping to draw attention to the police shooting last month of a black man in had described in advance their plans to target the mall, but not the airport.” (New York Post)
  8. Four Iconic Brands That Reinvented Themselves “Even well-known brands need a refresh now and then. It's easier said than done: Less than 1 in 10 companies have a successful brand reboot, according to DiMassimo. Click ahead to see examples of companies that are trying to reinvent themselves for a new generation of shoppers.” (CNBC)
  9. Commercial Market Report: Top Retail Rents Far Outstrip the Average “The huge surges in retail asking rents over the past several years in popular shopping districts in Manhattan such as Times Square, Fifth Avenue and Soho have exaggerated just how strong the market is. In reality, there are massive differences between high-street retail and mom-and-pop districts.” (The Real Deal)
  10. Inside Third Avenue Management, Where Employees Were Terrified to Bring Bad News to the Boss “The biggest mutual-fund blowup since the 2008 financial crisis underscores how difficult it can be to rein in a mutual fund taking outsize risks compared with its peers, even though Focused Credit officially had many overseers. The US Securities and Exchange Commission, which is investigating the fund's meltdown, did not get involved until it was clear Third Avenue's only recourse was to liquidate the fund, according to people familiar with the situation.” (Business Insider)
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