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Another Day In REIT Paradise: Getting Back To Normal

Mar. 08, 2021 9:46 AM ETEQR, FPI, FPI.PB, WELL2 Comments
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Dividend Growth Investing, REITs, Value

Seeking Alpha Analyst Since 2009

Brad Thomas is the CEO of Wide Moat Research ("WMR"), a subscription-based publisher of financial information, serving over 100,000 investors around the world. WMR has a team of experienced multi-disciplined analysts covering all dividend categories, including REITs, MLPs, BDCs, and traditional C-Corps.

The WMR brands include: (1) iREIT on Alpha (Seeking Alpha), and (2) The Dividend Kings (Seeking Alpha), and (3) Wide Moat Research. He is also the editor of The Forbes Real Estate Investor

Thomas has also been featured in Barron's, Forbes Magazine, Kiplinger’s, US News & World Report, Money, NPR, Institutional Investor, GlobeStreet, CNN, Newsmax, and Fox. 

He is the #1 contributing analyst on Seeking Alpha in 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, and 2022 (based on page views) and has over 108,000 followers (on Seeking Alpha). Thomas is also the author of The Intelligent REIT Investor Guide (Wiley) and is writing a new book, REITs For Dummies. 

Thomas received a Bachelor of Science degree in Business/Economics from Presbyterian College and he is married with 5 wonderful kids. He has over 30 years of real estate investing experience and is one of the most prolific writers on Seeking Alpha. To learn more about Brad visit HERE.


  • US REIT performance for the week through March 5, 2021: The MSCI U.S. REIT Index decreased (0.1%) vs. a +0.8% increase for the S&P 500.
  • Year to date, REITs have provided a total return of +4.0% vs. +2.6% for the S&P 500 and 2.6%for Global REITs, while the 10-Year yield increased 64 bps to 1.55%.
  • Most shorted REITs (% of float): SKT(33.2%), MAC (25.6%), SRG (18.0%), PEI (17.5%) and CLNS (13.6%).

Quote for Today:

“I played my best every day. You never know when someone may be seeing you play for the first time.” – Joe DiMaggio


Unless you live in the still-struggling state of New York, you may not have realized the significance of this past weekend.

But being in the commercial real estate business, I couldn’t help but notice that movie theaters in New York City were open for the first time in practically a year.

Now, that was with 25% capacity. But it’s still something, especially considering how NYC is one of the nation’s biggest movie-going markets, second only to Los Angeles.

According to Fox Business, other entertainment and art venues can open as of April 2, just as long as they have no more than 100 people indoors at a time. Broadway, meanwhile, could be making a teeny tiny comeback in June… with a big emphasis on “could be.”

As the news site reports:

“Shows are canceled through May 30 of this year, but few theater professionals are expecting a return in the spring or summer. Instead, they are eyeing the fall and winter as a more opportune time to revive an industry that came to a complete halt almost one full year ago.”

The added delay is an obvious shame for everyone in that line of work. And my sincere sympathies go out to everyone who has to keep wondering about their next paycheck as a result.

As a REIT analyst, however, it’s the theaters angle I’m most interested. I’m not aware of any publicly traded examples in our coverage space that own Broadway’s many parts and pieces. But there are more than one that own theater-specific buildings.

That’s why I’m also going to mention The Hollywood Reporter’s headline that the box office just enjoyed its “biggest weekend since [the] pandemic shut down theaters.” Here’s a bit of the recent history it reports:

“Over the March 6-8 weekend in 2020, movie ticket sales in North America totaled a combined $101. 2 million before beginning their precipitous – and unprecedented – decline due [to] the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Revenue fell to $54.8 million the following weekend, according to Comescore. By March 20, almost every cinema had closed up shop except for drive-ins. That weekend, ticket sales plummeted to $195,952, prompting a collective sigh of grief across Hollywood and the exhibition industry.”

Now, they’re cautiously cheering at $25 million and wondering if it can only get better from here. Considering how L.A. should be following in the Big Apple’s footsteps this month, that’s very valid speculation.

The World According to Commercial Real Estate

Let’s get right to it! Courtesy of The Daily REITBeat, we can pass on details such as how:

  • Welltower (WELL)says it saw “meaningful improvement” in its February occupancy trends. In mid-January, 84% of its communities were accepting new residents. Now, that number has climbed to 95%. There’s also been a major improvement in its resident Covid-19 case count over that time, with 89% of its properties reporting a completely clean bill of health on a trailing two-week basis versus 64% in mid-January.

By the way, my team and I are even now working on a deep-dive analysis on WELL for our members at iREIT on Alpha.

  • Farmland Partners (FPI) sold eight farms with a total of 2,811 acres for $18.3 million to Promised Land Opportunity Zone Farms I, LLC. It used part of those proceeds to pay down $7.8 million of debt.

I plan to interview its CEO soon, and you can bet I’ll be asking him for more information about this OZ news when I do.

  • Equinix (EQR)says it saw strong continuing demand for its apartment units in February, with more moving in than moving out. Occupancy was up from 95.1% in January to 95.3%, with better pricing power too.

And I’ve got a note about that one too, since iREIT recently launched a weekly sector review series. We’ll be highlighting the multifamily sector this weekend, so make sure to keep reading if you want to know how to get your hands on that moneymaking – and saving – opportunity.

(Source: The Daily REIT Beat)

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They’re designed to give you the kind of insider information that puts people ahead of the game. Just think about all the possibilities to profit from when you’re not in the middle of the rat race anymore…

Author's note: Brad Thomas is a Wall Street writer, which means he's not always right with his predictions or recommendations. Since that also applies to his grammar, please excuse any typos you may find. Also, this article is free: written and distributed only to assist in research while providing a forum for second-level thinking.

Analyst's Disclosure: I am/we are long EQR, FPI.

Seeking Alpha's Disclosure: Past performance is no guarantee of future results. No recommendation or advice is being given as to whether any investment is suitable for a particular investor. Any views or opinions expressed above may not reflect those of Seeking Alpha as a whole. Seeking Alpha is not a licensed securities dealer, broker or US investment adviser or investment bank. Our analysts are third party authors that include both professional investors and individual investors who may not be licensed or certified by any institute or regulatory body.

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