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Global Investor Intentions Survey 2014

Global Special Report | 2014

Executive Summary

  • The CBRE Investor Intentions Survey was first conducted in Europe in 2010 and was extended to Asia Pacific and North America for the first time in 2014. Surveys of the three regions were carried out online from 27 January to 24 February 2014 with a total of 743 responses globally spread across a range of different types of real estate investors including fund managers, property companies and institutions. 
  • Investors from all three regions say they will remain active in 2014. Two-thirds of respondents said they expect their purchases to exceed their sales this year and that they will engage in stronger purchasing activity compared to last year, when total global real estate investment turnover surged 25% y-o-y to US$560 billion*, a record annual total. 
  • Investors from all three regions have a strong interest in the industrial and logistics sector. This was the only sector where investor intentions outpaced the actual percentage of capital invested in 2013. The global growth of e-commerce and shift to consumption-led demand in Asia are supporting interest in this sector and bringing about structural changes in occupier demand. 
  • The greatest concern among investors is whether they can access enough assets at prices that still make financial sense. When asked to name the biggest obstacle to acquiring assets, the vast majority of responses related to issues about the availability of assets (29%) at the right price (30%). These obstacles are symptomatic of crowded and keenly priced markets. 
  • Investor responses in the three regions point to a higher risk appetite for secondary assets (45%) in 2014. The common trends in investor behavior globally reflect the fact that real estate is becoming a global asset class and that capital is increasingly mobile. Core markets are becoming more competitive and expensive, prompting investors to target a wider range of opportunities in their search for value. 
  • Investors in the three regions identify a variety of different threats to their respective markets. 
  • In North America, the fears are on the financial side and relate to the tapering of quantitative easing and potential interest rate rises. Bond markets have already priced in the end of quantitative easing but commercial real estate investors are still wary. 
  • In Asia Pacific, the fears relate to the real economy and worries about a slowdown, driven presumably by issues surrounding the sustainability of growth in China. 
  • In Europe, investors remain worried about the potential impact on future growth as a result of further government spending cuts. However, the possibility of a pricing bubble is by far the most common concern.

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