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10 Must Reads for the CRE Industry Today (November 29, 2017)

Fed chair nominee Jerome Powell promised little policy change at his Senate confirmation hearing, CNBC reports. MarketWatch ranks the country’s top real estate markets. These are among today’s top stories from around the commercial real estate industry.

  1. Powell, Sounding a Lot Like Yellen, Promises Rate Hikes and Little Policy Change “As if markets needed any more persuading that the Federal Reserve is about to raise rates, the likely next fed chief provided a little more ammunition.” (CNBC)
  2. Tax Break Could Help Small Shops Survive Manhattan’s Rising Rents “New York is a booming city somehow plagued by vacant storefronts, pockmarks on the streetscape that are casualties of urban evolution: Higher rents are forcing smaller shops out of business, and in their place follow a series of ubiquitous banks, chain drugstores and coffee shops. On Thursday, the City Council is expected to pass a bill that tackles a little-known facet of the multipartite problem: the commercial rent tax, which affects only businesses in Manhattan south of 96th Street that pay at least $250,000 a year in rent.” (The New York Times)
  3. These Are the Hottest Real-Estate Markets in the U.S. “They say a good place is hard to find, but if you’re looking to live in one of these 25 metropolitan areas, that may feel like an understatement.” (MarketWatch)
  4. Staten Island’s North Shore Is Experiencing a Building Boom “A landmark waterfront mansion in Staten Island, built by an influential New York developer in 1835 and abandoned for 17 years, is being refurbished for use as a restaurant and banquet hall and is expected to open this year.” (Wall Street Journal, subscription required)
  5. Renting Real Estate to Amazon Is a Nightmare: Sources “Amazon is so fixated on getting the best real estate deals in the best locations that it not only looks at all the availabilities but also trades paper and negotiates down to the wire on multiple locations, sources report. Then, like a fickle friend, it stops returning calls and texts, while stamping its feet and claiming confidentiality.” (New York Post)
  6. Amazon’s Prime Customers Are Spending More This Holiday Season, as Retailers Scramble to Keep Up Online “The key to Amazon’s success appears to be its wealthier and more loyal customer base. Prime members are Amazon’s ‘golden jewel,’ especially during the holiday shopping season, according to GBH Insights analyst Daniel Ives.” (CNBC)
  7. Closing 40 Stores, Bon-Ton Sets Off CMBS Alarm Bells “The Bon-Ton Stores announcement this month that it will close 40 stores—15 percent of its total portfolio—could imperil a swath of more than a dozen securitized commercial mortgage deals, according to a report yesterday by Morningstar Credit Ratings.” (Commercial Observer)
  8. Here’s How Much Office Space Is Expected to Hit LA in 2018 “Los Angeles has about 1.73 million square feet of new office space expected to be delivered in 2018, according to a new study by Commercial Cafe. That places the city at No. 10 on the blog’s ranking of the top 50 markets for new office space next year.” (The Real Deal)
  9. New York & Company Acquires Bankrupt Plus-Size Retailer “Fashion to Figure will live to see another day. In an acquisition that will give it entry into the $21 billion women’s plus-size apparel market, New York & Company has entered into an agreement to purchase certain assets of Fashion to Figure for $1.4 million in cash (plus no more than $1.0 million of fees and expenses).” (Chain Store Age)
  10. Surprisingly Strong 2017 for Manhattan’s Office Market “Despite initial doubt, 2017 turned out to be a record year for the office sector, noted Cushman & Wakefield’s Louis D’Avanzo. He discussed his expectations for the upcoming year as a wave of new supply is set to hit the market.” (Commercial Property Executive)
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