NAREIT’s Research function encompasses three types of activity:
- NAREIT’s staff of PhD economists conduct internal analysis on widely varying issues of interest to REIT and real estate investors, investment managers, plan sponsors, investment consultants, journalists, and others.
- NAREIT sponsors research by respected third-party researchers including Morningstar, Wilshire Associates, and independent academic economists.
- NAREIT keeps abreast of research conducted independently by independent academics and industry research organizations.
Among the questions addressed by NAREIT’s recent internal research are:
- Do REITs provide exposure to the investment returns of the real estate asset class, or to the equity asset class?
- Do REIT investments protect investors against inflation?
- How do REIT general & administrative expenses compare with other ways of investing in real estate?
- Do REIT executive compensation structures align the interests of REIT executives with those of investors?
- Has REIT volatility declined significantly since the liquidity crisis of 2008-2009? How volatile are REITs?
- Have correlations between REITs and other assets have declined significantly since the liquidity crisis? How high are REIT-stock correlations?
- How do REIT returns compare with returns of private equity real estate funds?
- How do listed REIT investments work with unlisted real estate investments in diversified real estate portfolios?
- How liquid is the listed REIT market?
- What are the reasons for outperformance by listed REITs relative to private real estate investments?
NAREIT’s sponsored research agenda has addressed several complex issues, including:
- What is the role of REITs in Target-Date retirement investment portfolios?
- How are optimal allocations to REITs affected by bad-tail events such as the liquidity crisis?
- What is the role of U.S. and non-U.S. REITs in global mixed-asset portfolios?
- What role do REITs play in Liability-Driven Investment (LDI) portfolios?
NAREIT gathers independent research on all of these topics and others, including:
- The effects of liquidity, transparency, and governance on risk-adjusted investment returns
- The importance of the REIT distribution requirement in maintaining capital market discipline
- The role of access to capital markets (public equity, public debt, private equity, and private debt) in strengthening REIT performance