Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Stuck Beside a Cap Rate with the Second Quarter Blues Again

...Or is it Deja Vu all over again? Whether it is Dylan or Yogi there are striking parallels between first quarter activity in 2010 and 2011. Both years began with a flurry of activity, cap rate compression and a more open lending environment. Deals were transacted and the outlook was positive. Then we hit the brakes. In early 2010, the collapse of the Greek economy set off a fear of European default with repercussions that were felt across the globe – an enlightening testament to the power and perils of a truly global economy. The good news of course is that by early summer, the net lease world was right again and deal making and cap rates responded to an improving economy and a lack of quality net lease product.

Following a solid close to the fourth quarter, 2011 got off to a roaring start with further cap rate compression and transactions closed at rates that rivaled those of the peak years of net lease investing. As the second quarter of 2011 approaches, we potentially find ourselves in a place that looks an awful lot like the second quarter of last year. Will news from across the globe cast a shadow on domestic trade? Will revolution, heightened U.S. involvement in the Middle East and a historic disaster in Japan stall the US economy and net lease investing in particular? Alternatively, just as in 2010, will the volatility in the bond and securities market drive investors to net lease assets that provide bond like, secure, stable returns with solid real estate fundamentals as a backstop to their investment?

Whitey Ford was pitching for the Yankees at Yankee stadium. Luis Aparicio led off for the White Sox with a first pitch base hit. Nellie Fox batted second fouled off a couple pitches and then got a base hit. The next batter hit a home run and Yankee manager Casey Stengel went out to the mound and asked Yogi "Has Whitey got anything?" to which Yogi replied, "What the hell do I know? I haven't caught one yet!"

Like Yogi we don’t have enough information yet but let us know what you think and how global events influence your investment strategy.

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