LAS VEGAS—A recent panel discussion at ICSC Las Vegas covered the state of the capital markets and during a morning session, where industry experts provided insights into the current situation, shedding light on the challenges and opportunities facing the market. Hessam Nadji, the president and CEO of Marcus & Millichap, kicked off the discussion by acknowledging the significant disruption caused by the movement of interest rates. 

Nadji compared the situation to the financial crisis of 2008 and 2009, emphasizing that while the financial system was not on the brink of collapse this time, the impact on valuation and transaction velocity was similar. Sellers, Nadji noted, were hesitant to enter the market unless compelled by urgent circumstances. However, any products that did hit the market were attracting multiple offers, despite the tight financing conditions, with the intention of refinancing later, he said. Nadji also pointed out that retail, surprisingly, emerged as the new darling of the industry, outperforming other property types.

Glenn Rufrano, ICSC Chair and former CEO of VEREIT, moderator of the panel, expressed relief that the industry had moved away from the bottom of the economic downturn. This sentiment was echoed by other participants who acknowledged the progress made but also emphasized the need for more activity. Alex Nyhan, CEO of First Washington Realty and ICSC Trustee, for example, noted the changing composition of buyers for grocery-anchored shopping centers. 

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Natalie Dolce

Natalie Dolce, editor-in-chief of GlobeSt.com and GlobeSt. Real Estate Forum, is responsible for working with editorial staff, freelancers and senior management to help plan the overarching vision that encompasses GlobeSt.com, including short-term and long-term goals for the website, how content integrates through the company’s other product lines and the overall quality of content. Previously she served as national executive editor and editor of the West Coast region for GlobeSt.com and Real Estate Forum, and was responsible for coverage of news and information pertaining to that vital real estate region. Prior to moving out to the Southern California office, she was Northeast bureau chief, covering New York City for GlobeSt.com. Her background includes a stint at InStyle Magazine, and as managing editor with New York Press, an alternative weekly New York City paper. In her career, she has also covered a variety of beats for M magazine, Arthur Frommer's Budget Travel, FashionLedge.com, and Co-Ed magazine. Dolce has also freelanced for a number of publications, including MSNBC.com and Museums New York magazine.