Good, but could be better: Real estate around the world continues to recover from the global financial crisis, but performance slowed during 2012
Across asset classes, 2012 was the year of strong equity performance, with the MSCI World Index posting a return of more than 15 percent for the year as a whole. Real estate securities markets achieved even stronger performance, at more than 20 percent for most major markets. The results for the direct real estate market show a slowing of momentum during 2012, due largely to lagging capital value growth. Relatively steady income returns, however, overshadowed capital value growth, leading to overall positive performance of 7.4 percent for the year as a whole.
Although slowing during 2012, this is the third year of relatively strong performance across the major global real estate markets since the downturn of 2008–2009. Unlike other crises, such as in Japan in the early 1990s, investors have not turned their backs on real estate but, rather, have sought to gain greater access to the asset class. Real estate remains the favoured alternative asset class, driven by strong relat