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

The Trump administration is pushing Congress to take action on the GSEs, reports Reuters. Forbes looks at three CEOs transforming real estate. These are among today’s must reads from around the commercial real estate industry.

  1. Overhaul Fannie and Freddie or We Will Act, Trump Administration Tells Congress “The Trump administration will pursue the reform of mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the guarantors of over half the nation’s mortgages, if Congress fails to act, officials told Congress on Tuesday. In testimony before the U.S. Senate Banking Committee, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson, and Federal Housing Finance Agency Director Mark Calabria defended a plan to release Fannie and Freddie from government control more than a decade after they were bailed out during the 2008 financial crisis.” (Reuters)
  2. Retail Bankruptcies Rise, Store Closures Skyrocket in First Half of 2019 “The pace of retail bankruptcies and store closures in the U.S. has accelerated so far this year compared with 2018, due in part to last year’s lackluster holiday shopping season, a new report finds. More retail bankruptcy filings are expected in the second half of the year, and bricks-and-mortar stores will continue to close at a higher rate, according to a report released Wednesday by professional services firm BDO USA LLP.” (Wall Street Journal, subscription required)
  3. This City’s Real Estate Market Is the Least Likely to Tank During the Next Recession “The Federal Reserve may not be currently forecasting a recession, but sooner or later the U.S. economy’s fortunes will turn for the worse. And when that happens, home owners in Rochester, N.Y., can rest easy. A new study from Redfin ranked Rochester as the city least at risk of a housing downturn during the next recession. Redfin computed the downturn risk for the 50 largest cities across the country using the following metrics.” (MarketWatch)
  4. Victoria’s Secret Men Lay Out a Turnaround Plan Centered on Women “Parent L Brands Inc. laid out a multipart -- if still vague -- plan Tuesday for turning around Victoria’s Secret: an updated brand strategy that’s more inclusive, a refreshed in-store experience and a still-in-development marketing overhaul that won’t alienate core shoppers. The irony of the male-dominated presentation wasn’t lost on shareholders who raised the issue with Bloomberg News during a break. Of the 11 speakers during the L Brands event, excluding an introduction from Amie Preston from investor relations, just three were women. And only one gave a presentation: Amy Hauk, CEO of Victoria’s Secret’s Pink line.” (Los Angeles Times)
  5. Three CEOs Transforming the Commercial Real Estate Industry “It’s no secret that many industries have experienced disruption from technological innovation, from Uber’s effects on the taxi industry to Amazon’s impact on the retail sector. Yet, the commercial real estate industry has been slower to embrace the shift. I decided to look at three companies that are revolutionizing the commercial real estate industry through technology. I asked each CEO about their experience as an innovator in the space and what they predict will be next.” (Forbes)
  6. Amazon’s New Multistory Warehouse Aims to Cut Delivery Times “Amazon.com Inc. has agreed to take space in a first-of-its-kind three-story warehouse, a new type of distribution center that could reduce delivery times in congested cities to hours rather than days. While common in densely-populated Asian and European cities, modern warehouses with multiple floors have been absent until recently in the U.S., where higher land and construction costs deterred developers. But now that more retailers are racing to deliver more same-day packages, developers are starting to build the multistory fulfillment centers needed to speed delivery in congested cities.” (Wall Street Journal, subscription required)
  7. Treasure Island Ferry Terminal Break Ground in Anticipation of 8,000 New SF Homes “Developers have begun building a ferry terminal on the raw, palm-lined shore of Treasure Island, the site of a massive real estate project that could bring 8,000 homes and 24,000 new residents by 2035. The ferry is a critical element of the transportation plan that city and county officials are continuously refining to get people to and from San Francisco without jamming the Bay Bridge.” (San Francisco Chronicle)
  8. Top 5 Markets for Office Construction Activity “Some 34 million square feet of office was delivered in the first seven months of 2017, with more than 170 million square feet still underway nationwide as of July, representing 2.8 percent of total stock, according to Yardi Matrix data. Development activity in the top tech hubs—Manhattan, Boston and San Francisco—accounted for a quarter of the country’s supply. Additionally, the bulk of properties under construction were in the top 25 office metros, almost 138 million square feet.” (Commercial Property Executive)
  9. Winning the Real Estate Investing Game Starts with Goals “For every real estate investor, the end game — your ultimate goal — must always be in sight. To be successful in real estate investing, you must have a goal, criteria to get there and the network to guide you in the journey. First comes your goal. It has always been in my nature to dream huge. Not just dream big, but huge. What could ultimately bring you happiness — $10,000 in cash flow per month? OK, now think bigger: What if you could achieve $15,000 in cash flow per month.” (Forbes)
  10. FBI and 2 States Examine Ex-Fox News Host’s Real Estate Business “A former Fox News host whose real estate advisory business left behind a trail of angry customers is under investigation by two states and the F.B.I. Federal agents have begun talking to several customers and associates of the former ‘Fox and Friends Weekend’ host, Clayton Morris, and a onetime business partner, according to four people familiar with the matter. Civil investigators working with the Indiana and New Jersey attorneys general have also been gathering information, the people said.” (The New York Times)
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