- February 1, 2022: Vol. 34, Number 2

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More of the same? REITs outperformed in 2021 — will they do so again in 2022?

by Loretta Clodfelter

Despite a few jitters in late 2021 with the emergence of the Omicron variant of COVID-19, U.S. REITs performed very well in the past year, with a total return of 43 percent in 2021, according to the Nareit Equity REITs Index. And listed real estate performed well across property types, led by regional malls and self-storage, up 92 percent and 79 percent, respectively.

“Big picture, I think REITs are in a pretty good position from a fundamentals position,” says Eric Rothman, a portfolio manager with CenterSquare. He notes 2021 was stronger than expected, and REITs in 2021 were playing catchup from 2020. “REITs were really punished in 2020,” says Rothman.

“COVID created uncertainty, and public markets react immediately to uncertainty,” says Jahn Brodwin, senior managing director at FTI Consulting. “That’s the good and the bad of the public market.”

“The way we characterize 2020 versus 2021 is as a big reversal in trends,” says Todd Kellenberg

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