In the U.S.:
- Tensions between Iran and the US reached a critical level as the US assassinated Iran’s top general, Soleimani, via drone strike. There was relief mid-week after Iran’s retaliatory strike yielded no casualties and helped ratchet down the war rhetoric. The US unleashed additional economic sanctions on Friday and is in the process of trying to repair the relationship with Iraq, whose parliament has requested that all US military personnel leave the country.
Office Properties Income Trust (OPI) announced that it has sold seven properties for an aggregate sales price of $205.4M. Office Properties plans to use the proceeds from the announced sales for general business purposes, including the repayment of debt.
- US and China set to sign phase one trade deal next week. Bloomberg reported that Vice Premier Liu will lead a delegation to Washington from 13-Jan to 15-Jan to sign the deal.
- Taiwan will be heading to the polls on Saturday in a contested battle with large implications for mainland China. The people of Taiwan have been largely influenced by the protests in Hong Kong and anti-mainland sentiment is at an all high.
- November headline household spending fell 2.0% y/y versus October’s 5.1% y/y drop. The results continued to highlight waning domestic demand following the implementation of the consumption tax.
CK Asset Company is studying the use of farm land for housing development. The company noted that transforming farm land for housing may take “relatively long time” to benefit those in need.
- The House of Commons voted 330 to 231 in favor of Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal. The vote finally highlights the path for the UK to leave the European Union later this month, after more than four decades of EU membership.
UK listed self-storage operator Safestore Holdings reported its FY19 results this week with EPRA EPS of 28.5 pence/sh that was generally in line with expectations given the 4Q trading update that they provided back in November. Like-for-like group revenue increased 4.8% on a constant exchange rate (CER) basis, +4.7% in the UK and +5.6% in Paris. Group LFL average occupancy increased 3.5%, +3.0% in the UK and +6.6% in Paris. Safestore also announced a further expansion into Continental Europe with the acquisition of four OhMyBox stores in Barcelona for €17.25 mn. Safestore, which had operated only in the UK and Paris, announced an expansion into the Netherlands last year via a 20% JV with the Carlyle Group. Although the absolute investments in the Netherlands and Spain are relatively modest, they each provide initial entries into those markets from which to explore the market.
The views expressed in this update are as of the date of this blog entry. These views and any portfolio holdings discussed in the update are subject to change at any time based on market or other conditions. The adviser disclaims any duty to update these views, which may not be relied upon as investment advice. In addition, references to specific companies’ securities should not be regarded as investment recommendations or indicative of the Adelante products, strategies, or portfolios.