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- November 1, 2016: Vol. 10, Number 10

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Ebb and flow: The European real estate capital tide shows no signs of turning

by Richard Fleming

King Canute the Great had it right all along. Misunderstood and ridiculed throughout history as the 11th Century British (well, like many things, he wasn’t British; he was something else, in this case Danish) king who thought that he could hold back the tide, Canute was on the right side of the argument. He knew that he couldn’t hold back the incoming tide or stop it going out again; he just wanted to prove it to the obsequious courtiers who wanted — or needed — him to think that he was omnipotent.

Real estate investors aren’t like that; they know that the tide can turn and that an investment environment that is benign and munificent today can quickly turn into something else tomorrow. The sea is always dangerous for the unwary, as several tragic incidents on Europe’s lengthy coastline during the summer proved. But in recent years Europe has been a magnet for cash-rich real estate investors from around the globe, as the “European investment by source of capital

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