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This recession is divergent from past downturns, both in its onset—a pandemic that triggered a global economic shutdown—and its trends and patterns, which are still emerging. During a digital conversation last week hosted by George Smith Partners, panelists—Bethany Logan Ropa of UBS Investment Bank; Tim Sullivan of Meyers Research; and Wes Rogers of Landmark Properties—discussed what has been most surprising as the market shifted in the last few months.

Sullivan noted that the trends have widely varied based on the market and the severity of the COVID-19 outbreak, meaning that the impact in New York City looked much different than in Austin, Texas. Jobs were also lost at a much faster rate than in past recessions. “We lost more jobs quicker than any other downturn than in the history of the US. We are hoping that it is going to come back quickly,” he said. Sullivan also was surprised to see quick spending action and a relatively unaffected home building industry. “The power of fiscal support from the government has been amazing,” he said. “Don’t discount it, and has probably been the thing that has kept both sides together. The resiliency of the new home market has been remarkable. Some builders are trading at stock prices above where they were before COVID.”

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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 GlobeSt.com 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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