Safe bet? Sovereign funds rethink once-reliable real estate

first_imgThe nature of property investments is also shifting, with funds increasingly investing in logistics space, such as warehousing, amid a boom in online commerce during the pandemic, while cutting back on deals for offices and retail buildings.Read also: Residential property sales, prices rise cool as pandemic hits economySuch shifts in behavior can have seismic effects on the global real estate market, given such funds are among the largest investors in property and have interests worth hundreds of billions of dollars in total. Three sovereign funds sit within the top 10 largest real estate investors, according to market specialists IPE Real Assets.A big question is whether the changes are structural for the funds, for which property is an asset-class staple at about 8 percent of their total portfolios on average, or a temporary response to a huge, unexpected and unfamiliar global event. “Real estate is still a big part of sovereign wealth fund portfolios and will continue to be so,” said Diego López, managing director of Global SWF and a former sovereign wealth fund adviser at PwC.“What COVID has accelerated is the sophistication of SWFs trying to build diversification and resilience into their portfolio – and hence looking for other asset classes and industries.”Sovereign funds have been more bearish on property than public pension funds, another big investor in the sector, Global SWF found. While they have outstripped the pension funds in overall investment across most industries and assets this year, by two to one, that ratio is reversed for real estate.Future of the office Funds are nursing hits to their existing property portfolios stemming from the introduction of lockdowns and social-distancing restrictions. While other parts of their portfolio, such as stocks and bonds, have rebounded from March’s trough, a real-estate recovery is less assured.Property capital value globally is expected to drop by 14 percent in 2020 before rising by 3.4 percent in 2021, according to commercial real estate services group CBRE. Analysts and academics question whether the pandemic’s impact may prove long-lasting, with more people working from home and shopping online.Read also: ‘We are dying’: No new shopping center openings, leasing grinds to halt“I think there’s a real threat to some commercial business districts in the big cities as I can’t see us all return to the 9-to-5 schlep in, schlep out,” said Yolande Barnes, a real-estate specialist at London university UCL.The value of property assets of some funds has fallen in 2020, with those experiencing the biggest drops including Singapore’s Temasek Holdings and GIC, Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA) and Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), according to data compiled for Reuters by industry tracker Preqin.Those four funds have collectively seen the value of such assets drop by $18.1 billion to $132.9 billion, the data showed.Reuters was unable to confirm whether the fall was due to lower valuations or asset sales. The funds either declined to comment or did not respond.Many sovereign funds do not publicly disclose data on property investments, with Norway’s one of the exceptions.The Norwegian fund, which has around $49 billion invested in real estate, up from $47 billion at the end of 2019, said last week its unlisted property portfolio returned minus 1.6 percent in the first half of 2020.Sovereign funds have also largely steered clear in 2020 of new direct investments in London or Los Angeles, hotspots in normal times, according to property services firm Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL), which said SWFs were “on the defensive”.Logistics and biotechThe funds’ advance in logistics properties, such as warehousing and goods distribution centers, comes at a time of high demand as people have bought everything from toilet paper to trainers from home during lockdowns.So far this year, logistics have accounted for about 22 percent of funds’ real-estate investments by value, compared with 15 percent in 2019 as a whole, the Global SWF data shows.Meanwhile, investments in offices have fallen to 36 percent from 49 percent last year, and in retail property to zero versus 15 percent.Read also: Millennials fail to benefit from slower rise in house pricesMarcus Frampton, chief investment officer at the Alaska Permanent Fund Corporation (APFC), told Reuters that real-estate deal volumes had “slowed down substantially” in general, but that, anecdotally, he saw activity in industrial facilities like logistics and “multi-family” apartment blocks.The wealth fund’s holdings have risen to $4.7 billion, up from $4 billion at the end of June, after the purchase of multi-family and industrial REIT stocks on July 1, Frampton said.“Commercial warehouse activity is strong,” he added.In a sign of the times, Temasek participated in a $500 million investment in Indonesia-based e-commerce firm Tokopedia in June.In contrast, physical retail, a significant part of many funds’ holdings, has been hit hard. QIA-owned luxury retailer Harrods in London has reportedly forecast a 45 percent plunge in annual sales, as visitor numbers plummet. Many other retailers have sought to renegotiate rents.The outlook appears brighter for some fledgling sectors such as biotech, which has come to the fore during the pandemic.“We have seen significant demand for life sciences space. That’s ranged from office to specialist lab and warehouse space,” said Alistair Meadows, JLL’s head of UK capital markets.Distressed opportunitiesThe United States office market is expected to face its first year since 2009 of more space becoming vacant than leased, according to CBRE.Still, investors are betting on a rebound of sorts in some quarters. For example, Canary Wharf Group, partly owned by the QIA, unveiled plans last month for a large new mixed-use development, including business space, in London’s financial district.And while hotels face huge challenges, occupancy rates are expected to rebound near to pre-COVID levels – but not until the end of 2021.Read also: Property market to bounce back next year: MarkPlusThe Libyan Investment Authority has experienced problems with the operating expenses of some of its properties, including some hotels in Africa owned by its subsidiary, Chairman Ali Mahmoud Hassan Mohamed told Reuters.But it remains committed to its real-estate portfolio, estimated at $6.6 billion in its latest valuation in 2012, as it was able to restore its value, he said.Crises can also present opportunities, however.In the aftermath of the pandemic, some funds may look for bargains as distressed properties emerge.The Hong Kong Monetary Authority, which operates a fund, told Reuters it would “closely monitor market conditions with a view to capturing appropriate opportunities”.And in an uncertain world, some academics argue that property remains a solid bet for savvy investors.Barnes of UCL said sovereign funds could be “lighter on their feet” than some other institutional funds and more able to adjust their behaviour to suit changing circumstances.“Real estate is one of the better sectors to be in, in a world of turmoil,” she added. “But it’s very much about picking the right real estate.”Topics : The COVID-19 pandemic has forced sovereign wealth funds to think the previously unthinkable.With prime office blocks lying empty around the world, hotels half-vacant and retailers struggling to stay afloat, the funds are retreating from many of the real estate investments that have long been a mainstay of their strategies.Sovereign wealth funds (SWFs) invested US$4.4 billion in the sector in the first seven months of 2020, 65 percent down from the same period a year ago, according to previously unpublished data provided to Reuters by Global SWF, an industry data specialist.last_img read more

Builder secures beachside site for $10M townhouse project

first_imgAn impression of Arenna, a boutique townhouse development proposed for Kamala Crescent, Casuarina.A prime parcel of beachside real estate on the NSW Tweed Coast has sold to a Gold Coast builder who plans to deliver a $10 million boutique townhouse project on the site.Hipmar Group, trading as Hipwood Design & Construct, paid $3 million for the 2.372ha site in Casuarina in an off-market deal finalised last Thursday. A prime land parcel 45-47 Kamala Crescent, Casuarina has sold for $3 million.The block, at 45-47 Kamala Crescent, was sold by Brisbane developer EkkoPoint Properties who acquired the parcel as part of a 2008 land transfer and planned to develop the site. Selling agent Nick Witheriff of LJ Hooker Kingscliff said the sale price marks a high point for the area and a positive boost for local industry.“It was attractive for the seller because he was able to achieve what is the highest price for a block of that size on the Tweed Coast in 10 years,” he said.“The local builder moved quickly to secure the site because he has all of the local expertise in dealing with council and the approvals process to deliver that project.” MORE: Middle of the market set to lead post COVID-19 sales Could this be Australia’s best house The proposed Arenna development is 100m from Casuarina Beach.Based in Burleigh Heads, Hipwood Design & Construct is led by Troy Hipwood who lives in Casuarina and has family living on Kamala Crescent.It is understood Mr Hipwood was motivated to secure the site after having witnessed the frenzy of interest in the proposed townhouses.An application is before Tweed Shire Council for Arenna, a boutique building comprised of nine townhouses in a project worth approximately $10 million for the land and build.center_img The nine Arenna townhouses boasts a modern, sleek design.Six of the nine townhouses were pre-sold by the LJ Hooker Kingscliff team in the past eight weeks, another is under contract and the final two – Houses 4 and 8 – are on the market.More from news02:37International architect Desmond Brooks selling luxury beach villa7 hours ago02:37Gold Coast property: Sovereign Islands mega mansion hits market with $16m price tag1 day agoLocated 100m from Casuarina Beach, the townhouses range in price from $829,000 (three bedrooms) to $1.099 million (four bedrooms) and boast modern, sleek finishes. “We had gone to market earlier this year with a townhouse concept on that site and we’ve sold more than 50 per cent before any approvals were in place,” Mr Witheriff said. Six of the nine townhouses have sold prior to development approval.Mr Witheriff said demand was driven by owner-occupiers drawn to the region by massive investment in infrastructure, including the Tweed Valley Hospital which is due for completion in 2023.“The Tweed Coast is experiencing increased growth off the back of all of the new amenity which is creating opportunities for people to live long-term in this region,” he said.“We have a lack of good quality new housing and land available on the Tweed Coast so buyers are moving quickly to secure that stock when it becomes available.” Plans for Arenna are expected to be approved by July with construction to commence immediately. RELATED: Global interest in glamping resort site Couple spends $1.45m on unit they’ve never seenlast_img read more

Dillsboro man killed in Hamilton County motorcycle crash

first_imgWhitewater Township, Oh. — A Dillsboro man has been identified as the victim of a Wednesday motorcycle crash in Whitewater Township, Ohio.Deputies from the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Department say, Robert Cogswell, 56, was passing slow traffic on the westbound I-74 ramp to southbound I-275 around 6 p.m. when he drove off the right side of the road. Cogswell lost control and was thrown from the bike and pronounced deceased at the scene.Cogswell was not wearing a helmet. Alcohol or drugs are not suspected but speed could have been a factor.last_img

Tennis News Serena Williams withdraws from Miami Open due to injury, Roger Federer survives a scare

first_imghighlights Serena Williams has not won a tournament since 2017 Australian Open.Naomi Osaka has won the US Open and Australian Open.Alexander Zverev lost while Roger Federer escaped elimination in the Miami Open. Miami: The new site for the Miami Open suddenly is missing a lot of star power. Serena Williams withdrew, blaming a previously undisclosed left knee injury. Less than two hours later, top-ranked Naomi Osaka lost in the third round to tour veteran Hsieh Su-Wei of Taiwan, 4-6, 7-6 (4), 6-3. Osaka’s departure matched the earliest ever in the tournament by a top-seeded woman and jeopardized her No. 1 ranking, depending on results next week. “I feel like I’ve dealt with the stress of people asking me do I have pressure because I have the No. 1 next to my name,” Osaka said. “I thought I was doing fine with that, but I guess I’m not.”  Roger Federer briefly seemed headed for the exit but instead advanced to the third round by rallying past qualifier Radu Albot 4-6, 7-5, 6-3. “Radu put me through the ringer,” Federer said.     No. 2-seeded Alexander Zverev double-faulted 12 times and lost to wild card David Ferrer, 2-6, 7-5, 6-3. Williams’ withdrawal was unexpected because she showed no signs of injury a day earlier while winning her opening match against Rebecca Peterson, 6-3, 1-6, 6-1.      Williams didn’t mention any health issues during a news conference after the match, and the WTA had no information regarding when she was hurt. Williams’ victory Friday was her first at Hard Rock Stadium, the Miami Dolphins’ home and the Miami Open’s new center court. The tournament moved this year from Key Biscayne, where Williams won eight titles.RELATED     “I am disappointed to withdraw,” she said in a statement. “It was an amazing experience to play at Hard Rock Stadium this year, and I would like to thank the Miami Open for putting on an amazing event. I hope to be back next year to play at this one-of-a-kind tournament in front of the incredible fans here in Miami.”      Federer, a three-time champion, lost serve only once in the first game but was on the ropes until he swept the final three games, to the relief of an enthusiastic stadium crowd. “It was a great atmosphere,” Federer said. “It was electric. I think that’s why I played so well at the end.”      While attendance in the stadium continued to be spotty, outer courts were jammed, and the day session drew a tournament record 32,831 spectators.     Seeded losers on the men’s side included No. 10 Karen Khachanov, No. 21 Diego Schwartzman, No. 26 Guido Pella, No. 30 Stan Wawrinka and No. 31 Steve Johnson. In a game of inches, the 5-foot-6 Schwartzman lost to 6-foot-11 Reilly Opelka 6-4, 3-6, 6-4.     Williams was next scheduled to play No. 18-seeded Qiang Wang, who advanced to the fourth round.     Also reaching the women’s round of 16 was the 33-year-old Hsieh, who turned pro in 2001 but has achieved the two biggest victories of her career in the past nine months. Her only other win over a No. 1 player came against Simona Halep at Wimbledon last year.     With two-handed groundstrokes from both sides, Hsieh was the steadier player from the baseline against Osaka. When Hsieh closed out match point with a forehand volley winner, she began to cry as the crowd applauded her performance.     Osaka smiled when reminded it was the first time in 64 matches she lost after winning the first set.     “I know it’s depressing,” she said. “I was thinking about it right after I lost.” Osaka, 21, has won the past two Grand Slam tournaments. Williams, 37, still hasn’t won a tournament since the 2017 Australian Open, before she took a break of more than a year to become a mom. She has played only eight matches this year. Williams’ stay at the Miami Open was also brief last year, when she lost in the first round to Osaka. Friday’s match was Williams’ first since she retired from Indian Wells two weeks ago because of a viral illness.center_img For all the Latest Sports News News, Tennis News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps.last_img read more

Lower Corentyne bowlers keep Georgetown in check at Lusignan

first_imgTHE Lower Corentyne’s bowling attack kept Georgetown in check at the close of the opening day of the second round Jaguars Franchise League 3-day competition at Lusignan yesterday.The City team, in response to Lower Corentyne’s first innings total of 165, closed on 154-8. Christopher Barnwell was unbeaten on 73, when bails were lifted.Asked to bat first, Lower Corentyne suffered a batting meltdown in the morning session to go to lunch on 87-6, a position from which they did not recover, despite Jonathan Foo providing the lone stability with 63 late down the order.Spinners Gajanan Suknanan, Steven Sankar and Ashmead Nedd created most of the problems for the visitors, as the trio shared nine wickets. Off-spinner Suknanan (4-43), was the most successful of the bowlers, while Sankar and Nedd had figures of 3-42 and 2-35 respectively.Medium pacer Christopher Barnwell (1-4), did the early damage, dismissing Akeem Hinds leg-before-wicket for one, but it was the spinners Suknanan and Nedd who grabbed five top-order wickets to spark the collapse in the morning session.Fellow opener Jason Sinclair made a fighting 19 before he was removed by left-arm spinner Nedd.Suknanan then took charge and ripped through the top order, bowling Kelvon Anderson (11), Seon Hetmyer (16), and then taking the prized scalp of Devon Clements (25), who was bowled after putting up a short resistance.Nedd, the national Under-19 spinner then added to his wicket tally when he bowled Alex Algoo without scoring.Foo and Kasim Khan went to lunch on nine and one respectively, but soon after the interval Khan was dismissed off the bowling of Suknanan for five.Foo then led some sort of recovery, and combined with Nial Smith (7) for an eight-wicket stand of 51 where he dominated the bowling somewhat, hitting two fours and four sixes.But soon after, Sankar removed Smith, Kelvin Umroa (4) and Foo to wrap up the innings minutes before the tea interval.Openers Robin Bacchus and Raymond Perez then started the innings in elegant fashion, adding 50-run for the first wicket, but when the partnership was broken after Perez was removed by spinner Umroa for 14, Georgetown batsmen collapsed in a heap.Bacchus (36), was the other dismissed batsman with double figures, as spinner Khan (4-49), Clements (2-21) and Umroa (2-52), made steady inroads. Barnwell provided the highlight of the innings with five fours and similar number of sixes. He has so far faced 78 balls.Meanwhile, in the other second-round matches Upper Corentyne faced East Coast at Port Mourant, West Berbice took on Essequibo at Bush Lot and East Bank clashed with West Demerara at Eve Leary.last_img read more

Running back Perkins verbally commits to Syracuse, becomes 1st player in Class of 2015

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on April 16, 2014 at 8:01 pm Contact Jesse: | @dougherty_jesse Running back Tyrone Perkins verbally committed to Syracuse on Wednesday night, becoming the first player to join the Orange’s Class of 2015.“Syracuse class of 2019!!!!,” Perkins tweeted.Perkins is finishing his junior year at Friends Academy in Locust Valley, N.Y., and is listed at 6 feet and 190 pounds by He’s not rated or ranked by, but the site does list his 40-yard dash time at 4.50.In a highlight tape posted five months ago at the conclusion of his junior season, Perkins displays an ability to get around the edge and shake defenders with strength and athleticism. The video lists him as a team captain with 91 rushes for 1,029 yards and 24 touchdowns on the season.Perkins is set to join Syracuse in 2015, following 2014 running back commits Naesean Howard (three stars) and Ervin Phillips (two stars).AdvertisementThis is placeholder text Commentslast_img read more

Unruh Institute discusses state politics

first_imgThe Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics, Political Student Assembly and Political Science Undergraduate Association partnered to present the second “California Politics Roundtable Discussion” Wednesday evening.Dream team · Former Assemblyman Anthony Portantino (left) and former California State Senator Tony Strickland (right) discussed elections. – Austin Vogel | Daily TrojanThe conversation featured USC’s two legislators in residence: former State Senator Tony Strickland and former Assemblyman Anthony Portantino. Portantino, who also teaches a class at USC, has been interacting and mentoring students since he and Strickland began the program last year.Strickland said midterm election season needs more attention from students because it can have a more direct impact on them than national elections.“Every election cycle is important,” Strickland said. “A lot of times people don’t focus on midterm elections, most people just focus on the presidential — it’s extremely important who represents you — historically, midterms have a lot lower turnout so the fact of the matter is with so many young people who are going to be involved in the political process, I think that’s a positive.”Portantino agreed, and pointed out that turnout in midterms is much lower than years in which there is also a presidential election. When it came to the issue of key congressional races, Portantino also said many elected officials have lost faith in the way politics functions at the national level.“With gridlock the way it is, if you’re in the minority party, it’s not fun,” he said.Because the deadline to declare a political candidacy in California for the upcoming elections closes soon, Wednesday night’s discussion could not have come at a more relevant time. Portantino and Strickland (who recently declared his candidacy for United States Congress), discussed prospects for the 2014 midterm elections that feature important races at California’s local, state and national offices.For Tara Campbell, a junior majoring in political science and broadcast and digital journalism, the most valuable part of the discussion was the influence of party organizations following California’s institution of a top two open primary, which does away with “registered party only” primaries and allows everyone to vote  to send the top two candidates, regardless of affiliation, to the general election.“The fact that parties are probably going to start having internal fighting and have a line up system of, ‘It’s your time now, it’s your time now,’ is a scary concept for me because I want the best person at the time, not someone next in line,” Campbell said.The seminar falls in line with the partnering organizations’ commitment to bringing politics closer to the students.For Brandon Cheung, a sophomore majoring in political science, the seminar made elected officials much more human.“I think it’s great that students get such direct access to two really influential guys,” he said. “And I think probably the most important thing about this is it shows us young people, who are disenchanted or disillusioned with the political system, how real these people are.”Strickland urged students to take the enthusiasm inspired by the discussion and get involved.“The barrier to get involved in government and politics is very simple: All you have to do is walk in and say, ‘I want to help,’” he said. “Whether you are a liberal or a conservative or in between a centrist, there are always candidates out there who would be eager to have them part of their coalition. All you have to do is show up.”last_img read more

Syracuse basketball opponent preview: What to know about Boston College

first_img Published on January 11, 2016 at 3:39 pm Contact Jesse: | @dougherty_jesse Facebook Twitter Google+ There are four Atlantic Coast Conference teams that remain winless since the start of conference play, and two of them will meet in the Carrier Dome at 7 p.m. on Wednesday.Syracuse (10-7, 0-4 ACC) hosts a lowly Boston College team (7-8, 0-2) that provides a very realistic shot at snapping its four-game conference losing streak. After hosting the Eagles, SU will travel to North Carolina for tough games against Wake Forest and No. 9 Duke.A very winnable game is in front of the Orange before that trip, and here’s what you need to know about Boston College heading into the matchup.All-time series: 43-24 in Syracuse’s favor.Last time they played: The Orange beat the Eagles, 70-56, last February in Chestnut Hill to sweep the season series. SU was led by 21 points by Michael Gbinije, who made 8-of-11 shots. Kaleb Joseph also had the best game of his freshman season, scoring 14 points while shooting 7-for-7 from the field. Boston College was paced by a combined 35 points by Olivier Hanlan and Aaron Brown, but no other player scored in double-figures.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textBoston College report: Eagles head coach Jim Christian has six freshmen playing 9.7 or more minutes per game, three of which have been in his starting lineup. The inexperience — with college basketball and playing with one another — has shown so far this season, as BC has suffered questionable losses to Massachusetts Lowell and Santa Clara, and lost to Duke by 17 and Notre Dame by 28 in its first two ACC contests. The Eagles rank 316th out of 351 Division I teams in adjusted offensive efficiency, per, with the offense relying on senior guard Eli Carter (team-leading 17 points per game) and freshman guard Jerome Robinson (12.3 points per game). Seven-foot center Dennis Clifford is in his second season playing starter minutes and is averaging 9.5 points and seven rebounds a contest. The Eagles’ biggest problem is that they haven’t shot well but have rooted their offense on the perimeter. On the season, 33.5 of Boston College’s total points have come from 3 (78th highest clip in the country) but its only shooting 33.1 percent, which ranks 213th nationally. It is no surprise that Boston College hasn’t scored more than 70 points in any of its eight losses.How Syracuse beats Boston College: The Orange can coast to its first ACC win of the season if it minimizes its mistakes. BC doesn’t force turnovers at a particularly high rate, but Syracuse can only help the Eagles get high-percentage shots if it’s sloppy with the basketball. Otherwise, Boston College doesn’t shoot well and the SU zone won’t be too threatened by any player outside of Carter. The Orange has mostly done well locating and defending high-scoring guards like Carter this season — namely Georgetown’s D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera and North Carolina’s Marcus Paige — and this game will come down to how well Syracuse can limit BC’s “manageable” scoring opportunities. On the other end of the floor, SU should see if it’s shooting well early but commit to driving the ball if 3s aren’t falling. The Orange has stayed committed to perimeter shots, even when its gone cold, throughout this season. But Boston College is one of the few teams left on Syracuse’s schedule that it can exploit inside, and it should take it advantage while it can.Statistic to know: Carter is used on 33.4 percent of BC’s possessions, which is the ninth highest player usage rate in the country according to Kenpom. He also takes 34.1 of the Eagles’ field goal attempts while he’s on the floor, which is the 16th highest mark in the country. Just about everything Boston College does runs through him, similar to Hanlan from a year ago, and SU needs to be aware of where he is at all times.Player to watch: After Carter, freshman forward A.J. Turner is BC’s most shot-happy player from the perimeter. The 6-foot-7 freshman, who roomed with Syracuse forward Tyler Lydon at New Hampton Academy, has taken 60 3s this season, has made just 28.3 percent of them and is scoring 6.5 points in 27.4 minutes per game. But if the Orange focuses too hard on Carter and Robinson, Turner is a candidate to burn the zone from deep if he hits one or two early in the game. With the Eagles being an evident underdog, it would only fit the script for an unlikely scorer like Turner to pour in 3s while SU shut down his better-known teammates. Commentslast_img read more