Wednesday September 16th’s Federal Open Market Committee (“FOMC”) telegraphing of their hyper accommodative future policy strategy(1) should prove a boon for multifamily real estate investors, not only keeping interest rates lower for longer, but shifting to prioritizing growth and employment over the Fed’s prior dual focus of growth and inflation management.(2) It is small wonder that the Fed has taken this marked change in stance on inflation, not only to allow for more rapid growth but also to diminish the long-term burden of managing the massively bourgeoning national debt required to fund pandemic rescue packages.(3)
As the COVID-19 pandemic has forced much of the global workforce to work from home, many have suddenly started to work full-time outside the protections of corporate security programs. Just as we have all become experts in social distancing and hand washing, we also need to be just as vigorous about our “cyber-hygiene”. As we all pull together to “flatten the curve”, many high net worth individuals and small businesses need to quickly get up the learning curve to become more cyber-secure. This article is an interview with cybersecurity expert and policy advisor Megan Stifel (Executive Director, Americas at the Global Cyber Alliance – the “GCA”) about how to do exactly that and the direction of cybersecurity policy around the globe.
Creating a Flight to Safety or just Operational Turbulence?
A number of investors have inquired about our view of the effect of this new coronavirus strain on their real estate investments, workforce multifamily specifically, and real estate in general. Frankly, it is still too early to tell. That said, based on the limited real-time information available in real estate, below are some factors and our thoughts on what we believe will be significant over the next 6-12 months.
I recently had the pleasure of presenting to a large group of real estate investors in Dallas at the annual 506 Group Investor Forum. As a participant in a panel about late cycle investing, it was apparent that this subject is top of mind for many investors. Most investors have benefited from a ten-year bull run after the longest uninterrupted economic expansion in U.S. history. Many are now looking across the U.S. economy and globally at frothy prices in many asset classes and questioning how to position themselves and their portfolios for what is to come. In this article we will frame the stages of the business cycle, attempt to ascertain where the U.S. economy is in that cycle, and ultimately discuss things to consider when positioning one’s portfolio for late cycle investing and beyond. (1) I will make the case that though we are “late cycle,” we are not “end cycle.” As such, portfolio positioning should start to contemplate recession resilience, yet not let the hangover of the Great Recession drive us to fear-based investing, in particular when it comes to real estate.
Commercial Real Estate (CRE) regularly tops the list for industries with clear gender disparity. The numbers are substantial: per the 2015 CREW Network White Paper,1 white men represent 58.5% of all professional CRE positions, 68.9% of mid-level positions, and 77.6% of senior executive positions.2 The imbalance extends beyond just opportunities, as the 2015 median annual compensation for men was $150,000 while the 2015 median compensation for women was $115,000, a 23.3% gap.3 A significant portion of this wage gap may be attributable to gender wage disparity in general, but it may also be attributable up to the types of roles that women tend to occupy within the industry.
Even for those with the earnings, wealth, and foresight to capably prepare, being financially ready for retirement can be a daunting task. Research on the subject is widespread and can become a winding labyrinth of vendors pitching their specific product solution. In this article we attempt to summarize some of what we believe to be the most relevant and interesting materials out there and provide the perspective that educates our investing decisions.