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10 Must Reads for the CRE industry Today (November 1, 2016)

10 Must Reads for the CRE industry Today (November 1, 2016)


  1. Macy’s Sells 5 Stores to General Growth Properties for $46 Mln “Macy's Inc. sold five stores to General Growth Properties Inc. for $46 million as part of its effort to focus on locations with highest-growth potential, the department store operator said Monday. The stores are located in Carolina Place in Pineville, N.C., Oakwood Mall in Eau Claire, Wis., Quail Springs Mall in Oklahoma City, Okla., Tysons Galleria in McLean, Va., and Greenwood Mall in Bowling Green, Ky. Roughly 300 employees are affected by the change in ownership.” (MarketWatch)
  2. As Vertical Farming Grows, a New Real Estate Opportunity Takes Root “It’s a staple of rosy pictures of our urban future, often viewed as the farming equivalent of flying cars. But vertical farming, long considered a curiosity, is starting to take root now. And according to the executive of one growing company, that means expanding beyond its niche, which offers a string of related commercial real estate possibilities. Speaking at the ULI Fall Meeting in Dallas last week, David Rosenberg, CEO of AeroFarms, spoke about the company’s technological approach to growing crops.” (Curbed)
  3. Is Orange County Real Estate’s Hiring Spree a Warning Side? “Real estate-related employment has reached a nine-year high in Southern California's Orange County, reports Jonathan Lansner, staff columnist at The Orange County (Calif.) Register. On the surface, this seems like good news, but could it be a warning sign. Lansner digs into the latest employment numbers for answers. He writes: ‘Orange County bosses in property-related fields are on pace to employ 250,000 workers this year. (As a comparison, leisure and hospitality industries employ 216,000 locally.) This is real estate employment’s largest workforce since 2007.’” (Builder)
  4. Aeropostale Discovers Many Stores Are Making Money “Aeropostale’s business wasn’t so lousy after all. The teen retailer, which was bought out of a Chapter 11 reorganization last month by a joint venture comprised of mall operators and a brand licensor, had hundreds of more profitable stores than originally thought, according to mall operator David Simon. Simon kept 500 of Aeropostale’s 700 stores open — 200 more than first thought — after discovering those locations were in the black, Sandler O’Neill + Partners’ analyst Alexander Goldfarb wrote in a recent research report.” (New York Post)
  5. Residential Building Can’t Keep Pace with Seattle’s Surging Job Market “Surveying the dozens of towering cranes growing into Seattle's skyline, one might wonder if there's a housing boom that will eventually crash as it did in the last Seattle real estate downturn. It's a reasonable reaction for an untrained observer, but it's also a dangerous one for the region's ability to plan for accommodating smart growth. Seattle was recently cited as the top U.S. city for construction cranes, with twice as many in action as New York or San Francisco.” (MarketWatch)
  6. Airbnb in Talks to Resolve New York Lawsuit “Airbnb and New York state are in talks to resolve a lawsuit brought by the company challenging a law it says could expose it to significant penalties for advertising short-term apartment rentals, a person familiar with the matter said on Monday. The potential accord was revealed after U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest in Manhattan canceled a hearing that had been set for Monday. The person said the hearing was adjourned so both sides could ‘work out a consensual resolution.’” (Fortune)
  7. Looming U.S. Election, Interest Rates Causing Uncertainty in Commercial Markets “With the U.S. presidential election less than one week away, the question of what will happen when voters go to the polls is not surprisingly having some effect on the U.S. real estate market. ‘The market is transforming for the worse due to many domestic and global factors, including the presidential election, and may take some time to stabilize and take a more reliable direction,’ said Tony D. Kamath, MRICS, principal and managing director, International Valuation & Advisory LLC, New York, a respondent to a recent RICS commercial property survey. ‘But in every presidential election year, the market tends to be cautious because people wait to see what the results are, and this year isn't any exception.’” (World Property Journal)
  8. Lower Manhattan Sees Dip in Commercial Vacancy “Amid a backdrop of softening across all Manhattan submarkets, downtown managed to eke out a year-over-year drop in commercial vacancy, down by .4 percent, to 9.9 percent, from the third quarter of 2015. Lower Manhattan availability overall fell to 8.7 million square feet from 9.07 million square feet in 2015. However, downtown saw a 15 percent drop in third-quarter leasing compared with the same period in 2015.” (New York Post)
  9. Rockefeller Center Owner’s Bet on the Next Big Thing for L.A.’s Arts District: Offices “In recent years, the once-gritty Arts District in downtown Los Angeles has seen an influx of restaurants, bars and residences, including large apartment projects from major developers. But now, with the streets cleaner and more lively, real estate investors are betting on a different type of property: offices. Developers, including Hudson Pacific Properties and Atlas Capital, are converting old buildings in anticipation of the neighborhood emerging as a hub for entertainment and technology companies that once saw the San Fernando Valley and the Westside as their first choice.” (Los Angeles Times)
  10. Jeff Sutton to Attempt a Comeback on Tel Aviv Stock Exchange “After his failed attempt to raise up to $500 million on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange last year, Jeff Sutton is back for another attempt at issuing bonds in the Israeli market. His firm Wharton Properties submitted a shelf prospectus last month for a bond offering of up to $200 million. This time, Sutton plans to issue a more straightforward offering with less perceived risk to bondholders. Unlike last time, the money raised is expected to go toward acquisitions and development rather than the repayment of mezzanine loans, sources said.” (The Real Deal)
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