"People believe in some instances that a lot of what thegovernment is doing to try to inject capital into the system mayactually have some effect," says Timothy Becker, director of theBergstrom Center. He notes that the most significant finding isthat respondents' perception of their own business outlook hasimproved after three years of steady decline.

Another positive finding is the perception of availability ofcapital, which Becker says jumped to its highest level in threeyears of surveying by UF. Respondents expect some money to trickleback into real estate as investors gain confidence in the stepsbanks are taking to remove bad assets from their balance sheets, hesays.

"If real estate investors think there are opportunities outthere for their firms to make money, that means there are dealsthat will be getting done," Becker says. "And when deals startgetting done, various participants in the transactions make moneyand it's almost like a snowball effect."

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