Stimulus bill heads to Biden, Senate confirms Fudge for HUD, Nareit sees REIT rally, Frankel inspects SPACs, and a Dick's Sporting Goods downer.
In Today's News
$1.9 Trillion COVID-19 Relief Bill Heads to the White House
One of the largest stimulus bills in U.S. history made it through Congress today and is expected to be signed by President Joe Biden before the week is out.
The Millionacres takeaway: Included in the massive measure is $25 billion in rental and utility assistance, about $10 billion for mortgage aid, and nearly $30 billion to rescue restaurants. That should help at least some landlords and tenants stay afloat while the economy continues to recover from the coronavirus.
Now-Ex U.S. Rep. Marcia Fudge Confirmed As New HUD Secretary
The housing policy initiatives of the new Biden administration will now be under the direction of the first woman to lead the Department of Housing and Urban Development in 40 years and the second woman of color in its history.
The Millionacres takeaway: Marcia Fudge, a Cleveland congresswoman for 12 years, has pledged to work to end discriminatory practices in the housing market, including bolstering Fair Housing Act rules. She also has said she'd like to see HUD commence to build 1.5 million new affordable homes. HUD will need some private investors to make that happen, so keep an eye out.
Nareit: Consecutive Quarterly Double-Digit REIT Earnings Signal Recovery
Nareit says today that a recovery in real estate investment trust (REIT) earnings is well underway after the sharp decline that occurred during the shutdowns at the beginning of the pandemic. One indicator: Funds from operations (FFO) rose 11.3% to $13.9 billion in the fourth quarter of 2020, recovering half of the decline that took place last spring.
The Millionacres takeaway: The REIT trade group says that most property sectors -- office, residential, diversified, healthcare, self-storage, timber, and specialty -- have begun a significant recovery, and that if the pandemic keeps winding down, more gains are on the way.
Today on Millionacres
What Are SPACs, and Why Are They Such a Big Deal in Real Estate Right Now?
Special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs) are often pitched as an alternative to the traditional IPO process and a way to democratize IPOs for more investors. And there can be tremendous upside potential when a SPAC IPO is well received by the market. But there's more to know.
The Millionacres takeaway: Our Matt Frankel shares insight here on not only what a SPAC is but what you should look for before plunking down cash on one of these new issues that are hitting the stock market on a regular basis of late.
Dick's Sporting Goods Sees Sales Slowing. What About Other Retailers?
Dick's Sporting Goods (NYSE: DKS) has weathered the pandemic well. While many retailers have reported sluggish sales -- or worse, far worse -- over the past 12 months, Dick's has consistently put out strong numbers. But the company now warns that sales could start declining.
The Millionacres takeaway: Dick's has benefited from trends such as a surge in demand for personal fitness equipment. A prolonged slowdown in its sales could affect not just this company but likely would be repeated in competitors like newly public Academy Sports and Outdoors (NASDAQ: ASO), which also occupies a lot of prime, critical commercial real estate.