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10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry (April 11, 2019)

Economist surveyed by the Wall Street Journal predict the Fed will hold rates steady through 2021. San Francisco Chronicle looks at how a 66-year-old mall became a culinary destination. These are among today’s must reads from around the commercial real estate industry.

  1. Economists See Fed on Hold at Least Through 2021 “The Federal Reserve will keep interest rates unchanged at least through the end of 2021, according to the majority of economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal this month. In March, the economists predicted the central bank would raise rates once this year, but Fed officials’ statements and projections since then appear to have changed the economists’ outlook. ‘The Fed’s rate hiking cycle is over,’ said Scott Anderson, an economist at Bank of the West. ‘Next move will be a rate cut.’” (Wall Street Journal, subscription required)
  2. How Stonestown Galleria Became a Culinary Destination “Stonestown Galleria comes alive most during meal times, when the food courts swirl with photogenic hunks of Taiwanese fried chicken and taro-filled buns. In recent years, the 66-year-old mall in the Outer Avenues has quickly and quietly become a top culinary destination in San Francisco, thanks to a flood of new restaurants that have brought crowds ready to line up for freshly made noodles, fruity boba tea and, most recently, Japanese souffle pancakes.” (San Francisco Chronicle)
  3. 7 Smaller Cities That Are Architectural Gems “A city’s architecture is like a living, breathing timeline that puts the trends and values of various eras on display. Even if you don’t have much time on your hands, you can get to know a city simply by taking in its architecture. Whether you take a leisurely stroll through a neighborhood or book a more formal guided tour, you’re bound to learn something new about a community’s history through the lens of its buildings.” (MarketWatch)
  4. Walgreens Unveils Latest Primary Care Partner: VillageMD “Walgreens Boots Alliance is partnering with primary care provider VillageMD in Houston where clinics will be opened next to drugstores as a precursor to a potential national rollout. It’s the latest test for Walgreens, which is already piloting urgent care centers adjacent to its stores in several markets and senior clinics in a partnership with the large health insurer Humana.” (Forbes)
  5. This Ex-Goldman Trader and His $800 Million Startup Hope You’ll Pay Extra for Real Estate that Aces a ‘Wellness’ Test “Wellness” is one of those extremely broad words that mean everything and nothing. To its adherents, it signifies more than ‘health,’ which is dismissed as merely the absence of illness. Wellness has become a giant industry, or at least a very flexible marketing term. In the grossly inflated view of one industry group, wellness is a $4 trillion global business. Gym memberships and organic produce can be considered part of the trend. But so can incense, DNA tests and sleep aids. So why not ‘well’ buildings?” (Forbes)
  6. 3 Ways to Invest in Real Estate When You Don’t Have Loads of Cash “Diana Olick explains how even if you aren’t ready to buy your forever home, you can still invest in real estate to help your bottom line.” (CNBC)
  7. Rent Is Accelerating Again. What Can Be Done? “Rental price growth, which took a brief breather this winter, is surging higher again, adding fresh urgency to policymakers’ considerations of how to address a worsening affordability crisis. In March, the cost of rent was 3.7% higher than last year, the Labor Department reported Wednesday. That’s the strongest annual growth since April, and a tick higher than the full-year average of 3.6% yearly gains throughout 2018. What’s more, it’s still growing faster than wages, as average hourly wages grew 3.2% over the same time period.” (MarketWatch)
  8. Nuveen Real Estate Appoints U.S. Chief Investment Officer “Carly Tripp has become the chief investment officer for Nuveen Real Estate’s US investment portfolio. Nuveen, which is owned by TIAA, is one of the largest global real estate investment managers having $125 billion of assets under management. In this newly created role, Tripp is responsible for overall investment strategies, acquisitions, dispositions, asset management and financings. The company manages an $88 billion US real estate portfolio.’ (
  9. America’s Favorite Cult Grocer Tries its Magic in New York City “Most 60-year-old men don’t go food shopping every day, but Tommy Mule does. Mule (pronounced Moo-LAY), a morning radio host in Rochester, N.Y., pops into his local grocery store daily for some Vietnamese spring rolls, a rotisserie chicken, or just a coffee and some chitchat with Jimmy, his pal in the produce department. The broadcaster likes the place so much he hired the supermarket to cater his wedding. He often takes out-of-town guests on a tour of the place.” (Bloomberg Businessweek)
  10. Sam Chang Looks to Build His ‘Most Expensive Hotel’ Yet “Sam Chang of McSam Hotel Group is planning to build “the most expensive hotel [he’s] ever built in [his] whole life,” the hotel developer told Commercial Observer. He is finalizing details on an agreement with Le Méridien for his hotel at 292 Fifth Avenue between West 30th and West 31st Streets. Chang said he received a commitment from the upscale hotel brand abut six months ago and hopes to finalize a deal in 30 days. Unlike the bulk of Chang’s properties, this one would be full-service, he said.” (Commercial Observer)
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