- January 2008: Vol. 20 No. 1

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Shop Talk: A Conversation with Ken Riggs

by Larry Gray

With the capital markets and commercial real estate investment market clearly in a period of transition, Larry Gray, editor of The Institutional Real Estate Letter, turned to Kenneth Riggs Jr., CEO of Real Estate Research Corp., to shed some light on current market trends and share his outlook for 2008.

It seems the U.S. economy has been sending a lot of mixed signals over the past few months. What’s your take on the strength of the economy and its near-term outlook?

We are, without a doubt, faced with the most interesting and diversely challenged economic times since the early 1980s. The mixed signals — extremely high oil prices, geopolitical risk, a weak dollar, government deficits and the subprime mortgage meltdown — are occurring at the same time that the economy is continuing to produce positive economic signals. Third quarter GDP came in at a revised annualized rate of 4.9 percent on a real basis, we have very str

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