- February 1, 2019: Vol. 11, Number 2

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End of 2018 sees property stocks outperform

by Christopher Hartung

Led lower by a collapse in US equities, the end of 2018 was a painful one for broader equities, with the MSCI World Index declining by 7.8 percent in December. Property stocks continued to perform well on a relative basis, however, because of investors’ increasingly risk-adverse posture and the sector’s more localised economic exposure (ie, earnings not as immediately impacted by global tensions compared to other equities). As such, Asia Pacific property stocks were only down 1.5 percent during December, with the safer-haven REITs actually up 1.2 percent. This performance was also superior to global property stocks, which declined by 4.6 percent over the month. While the headwind story lines of US Federal Reserve tightening, trade war tensions and ex-US global economic slowdown remain, more constructive perspectives on these headwinds continued to propel the strong regional performance. With December closing out the year, the Asia Pacific region ended 2018 down 6.4 percent, ahea

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