NAREIT's Steven A. Wechsler

WASHINGTON, DC—US REITs outperformed the broader equity markets for the first six months of 2014, according to NAREIT, driven by strong fundamentals in the sector and a favorable economic environment.

The FTSE NAREIT ALL REITs Index was up 16.14% on a total return basis for the first six months of the year, with a dividend yield of 4.03%, as of June 30, according to NAREIT.

US Equity REITs were up 16.25%, with a dividend yield of 3.52%.

Total returns for S&P 500 Index in the first half 2014 came in at 7.14% and a dividend yield of 2%.

For the second quarter, REITs delivered a 7% total return compared to 5.2% for the S&P 500. In the first quarter, the FTSE NAREIT ALL REITs Index delivered an 8.6% total return versus 1.8% for the S&P 500.

With the year halfway over, the tantrum investors threw over the prospects of rising interest rates appears to have completely dissipated. “The year’s first half performance shows that favorable economic fundamentals supportive of REITs outweighed last year’s interest rate concerns in the minds of investors,” NAREIT President and CEO Steven A. Wechsler, says in a prepared statement.