Retail investment activity is ticking up, slowly. In the first half of the year, investment activity increased 3% nationally, over 2017, and the second quarter alone increased 41% year-over-year, according to research from Newmark Knight Frank. The Western US has lead the increase in activity, increasing 33% year-over-year and 96% for the second quarter alone. Despite the headlines, investment activity has grown steadily since early 2015.

“With the country coming off of ten straight quarters of decline, investor uncertainty due to a combination of interest rate speculation and volatility, continued retailer consolidation, bankruptcies and general uncertainty coupled with a lack of refreshed pricing data points seems to have calmed,” Glenn R. Rudy, senior managing director of retail investments at NKF Capital Markets, tells “With the increased volume the surge in data points is leading to realistic pricing discovery and abundant capital is ready to continue this positive trajectory.”

In addition to popularity of West Coast markets, secondary markets are also seeing an increase in activity, and are actually trending above primary markets in terms of sales volumes. “Secondary markets, which historically have always trailed primary markets in terms of overall activity, outpaced primary markets through the first half of 2018 by a significant margin,” says Rudy. “This is primarily due to the sheer lack of available product in primary markets and its correlated pricing.  However, now that there are some additional data points supporting today’s pricing in these secondary markets, the yields have simply been too attractive for capital, starved for allocation, to resist.”

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Kelsi Maree Borland

Kelsi Maree Borland is a freelance journalist and magazine writer based in Los Angeles, California. For more than 5 years, she has extensively reported on the commercial real estate industry, covering major deals across all commercial asset classes, investment strategy and capital markets trends, market commentary, economic trends and new technologies disrupting and revolutionizing the industry. Her work appears daily on and regularly in Real Estate Forum Magazine. As a magazine writer, she covers lifestyle and travel trends. Her work has appeared in Angeleno, Los Angeles Magazine, Travel and Leisure and more.

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