- October 1, 2019: Vol. 11, Number 9

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Performance suffers as global growth weakens and tensions rise

by Christopher Hartung

While the global property sector posted quite decent returns (up 1.7 percent) amid broader market turbulence (down 1.9 percent), Asia Pacific property stocks were once again battered during August, down 5.1 percent, as the region was led lower by tensions in Hong Kong and a further ratcheting up of the trade war between the United States and China. This comes on the heels of weakness in July, caused by similar dynamics, when the region was down by 3.1 percent. As such, Asia Pacific property stocks have lost 8 percent in the third quarter through August. Because of a further bond rally in August, however, in which interest rates were driven lower — eg, the benchmark US 10-year Treasury fell an astounding 48 basis points during the month, ending August at 1.50 percent —the REIT portion of the property sector was buoyed and returned 1.9 percent, which while strong, lagged global REIT returns of 4.2 percent. With August’s returns, Asia Pacific REITs have returned 19.8 percent for

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