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CHICAGO—Much of the talk at this week’s REITWeek, NAREIT’s Investor Forum, has of course focused on the nitty-gritty details provided by the more than 100 presenting companies. But at Thursday’s lunch session, participants were encouraged to take a step back and look at some of the fundamentals that will affect the economic recovery.

Austan Goolsbee, the former chairman of President Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers and a professor of economics at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, gave the lunchtime address and began by saying that frustration with the slow recovery is understandable. When he first got to Washington, there was a lot of chatter about a V-shaped recovery, which after a short time changed to hoping for a U-shaped recovery, which in turn morphed into talk about an L-shaped recovery and “L is not even the shape of a recovery.”

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