Waldorf Hotel Sale: Here is a confluence of anoffshore investor seeking to park money in a safe place, the powerof 24-hour city, global gateway dynamics, and overshooting oniconic properties. Just up Park Avenue two condo developershope to cash in on the same factors by building sky-high trophytowers to attract skittish overseas capital. You thinkwealthy Chinese are not nervous over the Hong Kongdemonstrations—highlighting the widening gap between rich and poor?How about if you live in the “peaceful” Middle East? Or do you feelconfident if your home base is in one of the other BRICs? Expectthe money to keep pouring in to a few select elite cities for nowand push up pricing to even more unsustainable levels.

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Strong Dollar Buoys U.S. Stocks Well, thestrengthening U.S. dollar also buttresses the aforementioned24-hour U.S. real estate markets. Again offshore capital hasanother reason to look to New York, San Francisco and the handfulof other top cities for husbanding wealth. And if these playersexpect the dollar to maintain its current run, then in theshort-term it makes sense to invest sooner rather than later totake advantage of the currency bet.

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Office Sector Plods Ahead Meanwhile, the officemarket nationwide steadily improves at a still uncomfortably tepidpace—overall vacancies remain in the low teens and rents only inchhigher. The lowering unemployment rate hasn't translated intohistorically typical demand improvement, because new jobs aremostly at lower wage rates in non-office related work.

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Apartments are the place to be After sixstraight years of quarterly rent gains, you might wonder if theapartment sector is due for a slide. Since the majority ofAmericans have missed out on compensation gains over the lastdecade and meaningful raises remain extremely elusive, rentinglooks like the practical (for many: read necessary) alternative, especially when lenders hold to tough mortgageunderwriting requirements. The luxury rental sector could getoverbuilt—folks here can afford condos or in close suburbanhomes—but demand will remain extremely strong for middle incomehousing and affordable housing is in severe shortage. This assetclass has legs.

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Rate Rise Expectations Pummel REITs Privateequity real estate investors should take note—this is what willhappen to their values when interest rates actually do increase andcap rates head north. It's only a matter of time, but are wetalking six months or another six years?

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Industrial is the New Retail? Have you bought anew iPhone 6? If you go to an Apple store or mobile phone outlet,you will find they do not have them in stock except to servicepre-order pick-ups. Now you can go to a store to order or to savetime just go on line. And instead of going back to the store forpickup just have it sent directly to home or office. As far as setup, the stores will have you go on line to transfer all your datain any case. So why go to a store at all? Order on line and let thedistribution chain take over. We need fewer stores, lessinventory space in stores, and fewer warehouses too. New translatesinto less all around.

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Jonathan D. Miller

A marketing communication strategist who turned to real estate analysis, Jonathan D. Miller is a foremost interpreter of 21st citistate futures – cities and suburbs alike – seen through the lens of lifestyles and market realities. For more than 20 years (1992-2013), Miller authored Emerging Trends in Real Estate, the leading commercial real estate industry outlook report, published annually by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the Urban Land Institute (ULI). He has lectures frequently on trends in real estate, including the future of America's major 24-hour urban centers and sprawling suburbs. He also has been author of ULI’s annual forecasts on infrastructure and its What’s Next? series of forecasts. On a weekly basis, he writes the Trendczar blog for GlobeStreet.com, the real estate news website. Outside his published forecasting work, Miller is a prominent communications/institutional investor-marketing strategist and partner in Miller Ryan LLC, helping corporate clients develop and execute branding and communications programs. He led the re-branding of GMAC Commercial Mortgage to Capmark Financial Group Inc. and he was part of the management team that helped build Equitable Real Estate Investment Management, Inc. (subsequently Lend Lease Real Estate Investments, Inc.) into the leading real estate advisor to pension funds and other real institutional investors. He joined the Equitable Life Assurance Society of the U.S. in 1981, moving to Equitable Real Estate in 1984 as head of Corporate/Marketing Communications. In the 1980's he managed relations for several of the country's most prominent real estate developments including New York's Trump Tower and the Equitable Center. Earlier in his career, Miller was a reporter for Gannett Newspapers. He is a member of the Citistates Group and a board member of NYC Outward Bound Schools and the Center for Employment Opportunities.