Real Assets Adviser

November 1, 2020: Vol. 7, Number 10

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From the Current Issue

5 Questions: Grocery-anchored retail proves immune

The grocery business is as old as retailing itself, yet it is undergoing landmark innovation as technology opens new channels for meeting the needs of shoppers. This has become especially significant and accelerated by the coronavirus pandemic. While real estate investors have become skittish about the fast-changing and hyper-competitive retail sector, grocery-anchored retail in particular has, by and large, been rock solid in its performance. One of the executives most involved in the property type has been David Dunn, CEO of Slate Grocery REIT, an owner and operator of grocery-anchored real estate.

Urban agriculture gains momentum

Growing food indoors — in or near urban markets — is an expanding market that is likely to grow through the years ahead. It has already influenced commercial real estate, intrigues many economic development professionals, is sustainable and can create local food security threatened by climate change. For commercial real estate it has been a successful reuse of closed big-box stores and possibly malls, too. In addition, acres of metro industrial and brownfield sites have been developed into well over 1 million square feet of indoor growing space. This construction is no longer a mystery, as large design/build firms have constructed hundreds of thousands of square feet of hydroponic cultivation facilities for commercial pot cultivation facilities as legality has spread.

Single-family rental and build-to-rent markets poised for major growth

Based on current trends, the single-family rental market will likely be undersupplied over the next 10 years, despite the increased attention the segment is currently receiving. Of course, that could change if the number of units being produced increases dramatically, or if the COVID-19 recession leads to more substantial foreclosures pushing more units into rental inventory, but that is not the trend to date. Currently, approximately 6 percent of new single-family homes are purpose-built for-rent, which would result in around 700,000 new units over the next 10 years. Given demographic trends, the demand is expected to be much greater than the current pace of production, which could result in a significant supply shortfall, suggesting the sector presents a strong investment opportunity in the coming decade.

Vacancy — big time: The badly bruised lodging industry fights to stay afloat

People must have a place to live; consumers a place to shop; businesses a place to conduct commerce; manufacturers a place to make, store and distribute their wares. But when the economy goes bad, one of the first forms of commerce to suffer is travel — both for leisure and business — and that is a dagger for the hotel business.

10 quantum computing stocks for individual investors

Most investors figure there’s no way they can stake a claim in the rapidly escalating quantum computing gold rush. The companies involved in creating quantum computers and peripheral technologies are barely startups and can only be accessed by accredited investors, such as venture capitalists, angel investors and private equity companies.

Profile: David Frame, CEO of J.P. Morgan’s U.S. Private Bank

Like so many executives in the private wealth business, David Frame, CEO of J.P. Morgan’s U.S. Private Bank, pursued a collegiate area of study that failed to indicate his professional destination. To wit: a bachelor’s degree in American civilization from Middlebury College, which involved an array of coursework encompassing history and American literature. Frame says his understanding of college at the time was a place to take classes in subjects that interested you.

The powershift taking place in global energy

File this report about the decline of the global oil business under LIBERAL, ANTI-AMERICAN PROPOGANDA. Wait … scratch that. Exxon has been kicked off the Dow Index of 30 companies (of which it has been a member since 1928) and replaced by Salesforce.

The pace of reopening and its effect on real estate markets

After peaking in late February, U.S. REITs entered a sharp downturn in the second quarter of 2020 as the full impact of the COVID-19 outbreak began to be felt across the economy. As measured by the FTSE NAREIT Equity REITs index, U.S. REITs fell more than 44 percent on a total return basis over the next month.

Back to the office: How landlords can provide a safe return to the workplace for tenants

After setting up work-from-home policies when COVID-19 hit, many companies have been cautious about returning to the office as government mandates are lifted. Despite this hesitancy, the desire to go back to the workplace is strong. According to a recent Gensler study, 70 percent of full-time U.S. office workers prefer working in an office environment for the majority of their week, and only 12 percent want to work from home full time.

Which malls will close: Some metrics for investors

There has been a lot of discussion about the declining fortunes of American retailers. Much focus is on sales declines from internet competition. The question of how this impacts various shopping centers is complex. Some centers or “types” of centers have store mixes that make them more or less vulnerable to ecommerce. Within the mall category, some centers were built at great locations originally, while others were squeezed into more marginal sites. Some have had capital infusions and renovations. So are there patterns in the data relating the likelihood of a center’s demise to its location and characteristics?

Going atomic — and subatomic: House bill seeks to establish U.S. quantum technology network

Few emerging technologies hold as much promise as quantum computing and its related technologies. That is a fact not lost on federal agencies and legislators who have drafted bipartisan legislation funding the proposed creation of a U.S.-built quantum infrastructure network — basically a sprawling network with integrated quantum-based computers and related technologies.

Investors’ long wait: A rebound in oil prices appears distant

If you’re waiting for the big rebound in oil prices, you might just need the patience of a tree. Oil prices are going to be dragging the bottom of the barrel for some time, if the September IEA Oil Market Report from the International Energy Agency is to be believed.

DIY comes to stock exchange listings: Direct listings offer several advantages over traditional IPOs

When E*Trade launched the first online trading platform for retail investors back in 1992, it triggered a tsunami of change that is still being felt in the financial services industry today. Investors who were unhappy with full-service brokers now had a choice. If they didn’t feel the need for the analysis, recommendations or expertise offered by a broker, they didn’t have to pay for it. Investors could make their decisions and investments any time, any place, all by themselves — and they could save money doing it.

Cruise lines finding buoyancy: New safety measures and pent-up demand starting to reinvigorate the industry

In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, cruises were hotspots for the spread of the disease. Because of its early brush with COVID-19 outbreaks and the suspension of sailing for months after, the cruise line industry has worked hard to implement health and safety protocols that will encourage travelers to come back onboard. In this respect, cruise lines are ahead of the curve compared to other segments of the travel industry.

NASA sets ‘space economy’ in motion with strategy involving private sector

NASA has announced it will buy lunar soil from a commercial partner, marking another big step the agency is taking toward promoting the commercialization of space and the creation of a consortium of private vendors focused on the sector. The plan to retrieve lunar soil suggests the eventual mining of commodities from planets, asteroids and other stellar objects.

The 5G economy: Fifth-generation wireless forecast to create untold opportunities for investors

With the global economy in a slump, the question on the minds of many investors is: What will it take to spur more robust growth? As with many things, finding answers is a matter of following the money. In doing so, it’s hard to overlook the billions that big telecom and tech firms are pouring into the development and deployment of the fifth generation of mobile network technology, or 5G.

A hard round of investing lessons for the titanic Vision Fund

Bigger is not always better, even in the financial world. Less is sometimes more when it comes to investing. These are the lessons of the Son. No, not that Son. I’m talking about Masayoshi Son. If that name sounds familiar it’s with good reason. Masayoshi Son is the founder and CEO of SoftBank Group, a company that owns a beef stew of telecommunication and internet companies.

Humans versus machines: What happens when robo-advisers are put to the test

Recent history is rife with comparisons between machine computing power and human (organic) computing power. Thanks to advances in technology, that comparison has reached the financial advice field. Specifically, robo-advisers have been stepping into the role of financial decisions and portfolio allocations. The question is — should they?

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