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10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (November 29, 2016) Photo courtesy of Jie Zhang/Staples/Metropolis

10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (November 29, 2016)


  1. China Tightening Capital Controls Bodes Ill for Real Estate “Over the short term the yuan is under pressure, so investors should expect capital outflows to be curtailed even more. The most sensitive areas are the U.K., and especially London, property markets; in London, the housing market has been slowing post-Brexit vote but housing is still unaffordable, with the average price around 14x average earnings, so Chinese buyers were important to prevent prices from falling. Other property hot spots are New York, Sydney and Vancouver, although a tax on foreign property buying has cooled down speculation in the Canadian city.” (The Street)
  2. Real Estate Prices Should Trend Up, Says REIT Startup CEO “Up until recent years, REITs were pretty much the only option for investors who wanted to invest in real estate, but lacked a strong professional background in the industry. The economic crisis, low interest rates and the rise of algo-trading, led Millions of investors to search for real estate investment opportunities, and as a result, dozens of crowdfunding and other platforms were founded, in order to serve this growing market. One of the fastest growing and fascinating startups is an Oakland based RoofStock.” (Forbes)
  3. Indian-American Real Estate Executive May Join Trump Administration “Sandeep Mathrani, 54, the Chief Executive Officer of General Growth Properties, met the President-elect at the Trump Towers in New York on Monday. The presidential transition team, except for announcing the scheduled meeting, did not issue a read-out of the meeting Trump had with Mathrani, real estate executive from Chicago, the hometown of outgoing President Barack Obama. Local media reports speculated that Mathrani could join the Trump administration.” (The Tribune)
  4. Kushner Real Estate Activities Raise Potential Conflict-of-Interest Issues “The president-elect apparently isn’t subject to conflict of interest laws, but his son-in-law could be. If Jared Kushner secures a White House staff position, his real estate and other business activities could pose potential conflict-of-interest issues, the Wall Street Journal reported. Kushner has hundreds of millions of dollars worth in outstanding loans and counts major foreign and domestic banks among financial partners. Key policies, like EB-5, could potentially have a major impact on Kushner’s business.’ (The Real Deal)
  5. Consumer Confidence Soars to a Post-Recession High “Consumer confidence soared in November to a post-recession high, according to the Conference Board's monthly report published on Tuesday. The confidence index rose to 107.1, the highest level since July 2007. Economists had forecast that the index rose to 101.5 from 98.6. This was the first full report from the Conference Board since the US election. However, only a few responses were received after the election.” (Business Insider)
  6. U.S. Home Prices Have Set a New Record, Says S&P Case-Shiller “Home prices continued to climb in September, setting a new all-time record and surpassing the highs from before the financial crisis. On a national basis, single-family home prices increased by 5.5%, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index, which covers all nine U.S. census divisions. That’s up sharply from 5.1% the month before. Home prices have risen particularly fast out West, with the highest year-over-year price increases in Seattle (11%), Portland (10.9%) and Denver (8.7%).” (Forbes)
  7. In the Future, You Might Work in an Inflatable Office “Taking second place was a proposal by designer Jie Zhang that allows workers to truly become digital nomads, with inflatable offices that can be set up practically anywhere. These collapsible structures are insulated, both thermally and acoustically, and offer a futuristic view of how people might work someday. One of Zhang’s submitted diagrams shows a person carrying the inflatable in a shoulder bag. The directions: ‘arrive,’ ‘unroll’ and ‘inflate.’” (MarketWatch)
  8. Ex-Best Buy CEO Urges Big-Box Chains to Make Amazon-Type Changes or Die “The likes of traditionally brick-and-mortar-centric Best Buy and Wal-Mart have made great strides to compete more effectively online, but they need to continue to evolve in order to close the gap with e-commerce powerhouse Amazon, said former Best Buy CEO Brad Anderson. Appearing on CNBC's ‘Squawk on the Street’ on Cyber Monday, he said Amazon is an ‘incredible company,’ built for innovation in the digital age. ‘In its core culture, [Amazon is] constantly making changes, adapting, making mistakes, using the bottom of the organization as well as the top of the organization.’” (CNBC)
  9. Air Rights on the High Line Are Selling at Huge Prices “It might be a last gasp of a vanishing market, but a chunk of precious High Line district air rights has sold for a whopping $800 per buildable square foot. Highcap Group’s managing principal Josh Goldflam and Senior Director Michael Ferrara brokered the sale of 4,900 square feet of High Line Transfer Corridor air rights from 509-511 W. 27th St., owned by a local partnership, to development company Six Sigma for $3.92 million.” (New York Post)
  10. Home Depot Could Be the Surprise Winner of the Holiday Shopping Season “Forget the sweaters and socks. Home Depot Inc. is popping up as an analyst choice for holiday season sales amid elevated promotions for the category and strong appliance sales in the recently reported third quarter. Home Depot is the top holiday pick for analysts at BTIG due to a number of factors, including the home retailer’s low earnings-per-share exposure in the fourth quarter and positive tailwinds. Coming out of its third-quarter earnings announcement, Home Depot identified appliances as a standout category, reporting a double-digit same-store sales increase for the quarter.” (MarketWatch)
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