Real estate firms get socked by latest market tumble

Monday was Dow's worst post-New Year trading day since 2008

New York Stock Exchange
The New York Stock Exchange in the Financial District (inset, from left: Marc Holliday and Steven Roth)

The city’s major publicly-listed real estate firms were not exempt from today’s stock market hangover — the worst post-New Year’s Day performance by the U.S. markets since 2008.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed this afternoon down 1.6 percent to 17,148.94. Other indices closely aligned with the real estate market reflected the drop, with the S&P 500 closing down 1.5 percent — its sixth-worst opening day ever — and the MSCI U.S. REIT Index, which tracks real estate investment trusts nationally, down 1.3 percent on the day.

The Dow’s drop came in wake of pessimistic economic indicators out of China, the world’s second-largest economy.

As with the most recent one-day stock market bloodbath in August — also driven in part by sluggish Chinese economic performance — public real estate companies active in New York City took a fair hit.

Among the city’s major commercial REITs, SL Green Realty was down 2.6 percent to close at $110.08 per share, Vornado Realty Trust fell 1.5 percent to $98.42 per share and Boston Properties dropped 2.6 percent to $124.20 per share.

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Among the major residential REITs, AvalonBay Communities shares fell 1.9 percent to $180.72 per share and Equity Residential was down 2.1 percent to $79.90 per share. REIT newcomers Forest City Realty Trust — still trading under Forest City Enterprises — saw shares down 1.7 percent to close at $21.55.

Other REITs with interests in the city didn’t fare better, with Acadia Realty Trust down 2.9 percent to close at $32.18 per share and Empire State Realty Trust dropping 2.1 percent to close at $17.70 per share. Brookfield Property Partners, while not a REIT, was down 2.5 percent to $22.67 per share.

Residential real estate company Realogy — parent company of the Corcoran Group and Citi Habitats — had an up-and-down day before closing down 0.9 percent at $36.36 per share, while Howard Lorber’s Vector Group fell 2.2 percent to close at $23.08 per share.

Commercial brokerage firms also felt the day’s losses, with CBRE Group down 1.4 percent to close at $34.09 per share, JLL dropping 3 percent to $155.03 per share, HFF down 3.8 percent to $29.89 per share and Marcus & Millichap falling 4.9 percent to $27.73 per share.

Like the market at large, most of these companies saw heavy losses in the morning’s trading before somewhat making up ground in the afternoon — particularly closer to the 4 p.m. closing bell. It remains to be seen if, and how, they are able to recover Tuesday.