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10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (May 29, 2015) Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (May 29, 2015)


  1. Blackstone Forays into Oakland With Residential Project “Blackstone and CityView, a property company started by Clinton administration housing official Henry Cisneros, bought the land in January and want to begin construction by the end of the year, said J. David Martin, chairman of the investment committee at CityView. They plan to build as many as 435 rental apartments and have about 24,000 square feet of retail space.” (Bloomberg)
  2. Grubb & Ellis Parents Claims Avison Young Stole its D.C. Business “BGC Partners, which bought Grubb & Ellis out of bankruptcy in April 2012, says Avison Young's D.C. office conspired to get Grubb brokers to illegally transfer business, commissions, client data and other trade assets without disclosing them to the bankruptcy court. BGC later merged Grubb & Ellis with Newmark Knight Frank to form Newmark Grubb Knight Frank.” (Washington Business Journal)
  3. Mortgage Rates in the U.S. Increase to Highest for 2015 “The average rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage was 3.87 percent, up from 3.84 percent last week and matching the level at the end of 2014, Freddie Mac said in a statement Thursday. The average 15-year rate increased to 3.11 percent from 3.05 percent, according to the McLean, Virginia-based mortgage financier.” (Bloomberg)
  4. Fallen Lehman Chief Opens Real Estate Brokerage “Just seven years after his brokerage firm collapsed under a mountain of troubled mortgages, former Lehman Bros. chairman and CEO Dick Fuld is back in the real estate business, USA TODAY has learned.” (USA Today)
  5. In Real Estate, Golf Ups its Game “After suffering a triple bogey over the past few years—the real-estate market collapse, oversupply of golf courses, and diminishing interest in the game—luxury developers are taking a new approach.” (The Wall Street Journal)
  6. W.P. Glimcher’s Honeymoon Turned into a Bad Dream “With the closing on the deal, Simon effectively cut ties with Washington Prime, and the new REIT was viewed by some analysts as ‘a good fit from an operations perspective’. However, since the closing (in January 2015), Mr. Market has been less thrilled with the new marriage.” (Seeking Alpha)
  7. Venture Makes Bet on 1,004-Room Hotel in Orlando “A venture of two investment firms is making a contrarian bet on full-service hotels, acquiring a 1,004-room hotel in Orlando at a time when investors have been shying away from this segment of the market. The venture of AWH Partners, of New York, and Building and Land Technology, of Stamford, Ct., paid  about $60 million for the Doubletree by Hilton Orlando at Sea World.” (The Wall Street Journal)
  8. Millenials in Texas and California Reject Home Ownership for Vastly Different Reasons “Carrington Mortgage Services, a Santa Ana, Calif.-based mortgage lender and servicer, surveyed millennials about home ownership and then did something unique: it sorted the responses by category, and then broke them out by region in the United States.” (MarketWatch)
  9. F.A.O. Schwarz Didn’t Have to Die “In a ‘say it ain’t so’ moment, beloved toy store F. A. O. Schwarz has announced that it will not be staying in business, even though its lease on the grand space it occupies at Fifth Avenue and 58th street is not up for renewal for some time. The company evidently couldn’t escape the pressures of relentless competition from the likes of warehouse stores, Amazon, Wal-Mart, Target, and even its owner, Toys R Us, which doomed other toy sellers.” (Fortune)
  10. Here’s Uber’s Plan for a New Sci-Fi Headquarters “Ride sharing service Uber is planning a fancy new headquarters to go with its recent stratospheric $50 billion valuation. Futuristic buildings will be connected by glass walkways, according to designs recently released by the company.” (Fortune)
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