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Canadian investment in U.S. CRE surges

Cross-border investment in significant commercial real estate (CRE) picked up in the third quarter, led by an explosion of activity among Canadian companies, according Real Capital Analytics (RCA).

comoriginCanada was the No. 1 source of capital by a mile in the 12 months through September, with Canadian companies bankrolling an estimated $32.2 billion in transaction volume, up nearly 60 percent compared to the same 12-month period in 2017.

As for the third quarter only, Canadian capital investment in CRE totaled $20.4 billion, RCA reported. The next closest investment source was all of Europe, at $3.7 billion. Asia accounted for $3.3 billion in the third quarter.  

“Canadian investors are now not only the largest cross-border investors in the U.S., but without them the momentum for cross-border activity would have stalled,” company analysts wrote in a recently released report.

Canada investors were behind 41 percent of all cross-border transactions in the 12 months through September. Canadian activity has never been higher, led by longstanding investors like Brookfield AM, which acquired 347 properties in the 12 months through September, according to RCA.

Canada also was the No. 1 source of capital in 2017. RCA tracks transactions value at $2.5 million or higher.

France was the No. 2 source of investment in U.S. CRE, at $8.7 billion for the year ending this past September, and Singapore was third, at $7.4 billion. The capital from France came primarily through the Unibail-Romaco's takeover of shopping center owner Westfield this summer. In 2017, France was No. 15 source of foreign capital.

Meanwhile, Chinese investment has been falling. Chinese capital accounted for $5.8 billion in transaction volume over the 12-month period ended  this past September, down 54 percent from the same 12-months period in 2017. China was the No. 1 source of foreign capital in 2016, and No. 3 in 2017, according to RCA. 


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