Home sales ride high into 2021, home gyms a permanent fixture, American Eagle takes away and gives back, GSEs and note investing.

In Today’s News

Home Sales End Year at 14-Year High, Strength Seen in 2021

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) says that existing-home sales rose in December, with home sales in 2020 reaching their highest level since 2006.

Why it matters: This is one of the bellwether economic indicators, and the NAR says it expects more of the same this year as new buyers enter the market.

Are Gyms Dead? Why Home Workouts Are Here to Stay

With one in four gyms projected to close last year due to the pandemic, Americans began spending big on Pelotons and other digitally connected home-workout equipment. Now some say we’ll never go back, The Wall Street Journal reports today.

Why it matters: This WSJ piece [subscription required] speaks to two real estate investment trends: bigger living space and closed retail space. For one of these, the future looks kind of grim.

American Eagle to Close 200 to 225 Stores But Open New Aerie Locations

American Eagle Outfitters (NYSE: AEO) said this week it plans to close hundreds of its flagship American Eagle stores in the next few years while it opens 60 to 75 new locations of its more successful lingerie and active-wear brand, Aerie.

Why it matters: Most announcements of big-name store closings like this nowadays don’t include openings, too, but whether this is a wash for investors in real estate investment trusts (REITs) and other property owners remains to be seen. A good roost for an American Eagle is not necessarily the same for Aerie.

Today on Millionacres

What GSE Capitalization Could Mean for Investors

The move out of conservatorship and into private capitalization for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac continues slowly but surely, and it will be a big deal.

Why it matters: Millionacres’ Liz Brumer explains why she thinks increasing capital requirements and establishing more stringent lending guidelines for Fannie- and Freddie-backed loans while shifting the burden for maintaining these loans from the U.S. taxpayer to the private market is a win-win.

5 Things Mortgage Note Investors Should Know in 2021

While mortgage originations and refinances continue at record highs, mortgage defaults and unemployment rates continue to climb. What does this mean for mortgage note investors?

Why it matters: On a very related subject, Liz Brumer also shares what mortgage note investors should watch for as the coronavirus crisis continues.



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