To understand the impact of COVID-19 on the CRE market, we should first look back at last year’s sentiment. Fielded over the summer of 2019, last year’s State of the Market Survey was conducted during a time of long-term economic growth and expansion in the US.1 As such, respondents in 2019 were moderately bullish and optimistic that growth would continue. No one could have expected the pandemic, which caused the largest drops in the FTSE and Dow Jones Industrial Average since 1987.2 In response, this year’s Survey results dramatically shift away from that moderately bullish outlook among CRE executives. The majority of respondents in 2020, 59 percent, anticipate a bearish market for at least the next 12 months. The swing from bullish to bearish is mostly indicative of the uncertainties surrounding the pandemic, including how it will manifest in and impact the US and global economies in the future.
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