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REIT Replay: Seeking shelter

REITs and the broader markets slumped Thursday, April 7, as investorsflocked to safe havens and shunned riskier assets.

The MSCI US REIT Index (RMZ) slid 0.66% to close at 1,143.00,and the SNL US REIT Equity Index declined 0.65% to close at 304.64. The Dow JonesIndustrial Average lost 0.98% to end the day at 17,541.96, while the S&P 500dropped 1.20%, closing at 2,041.91.

National HealthInvestors Inc. has pickedup a portfolio of eight skilled nursing facilities currently operatedby Legend Healthcare in Texas for $118.5 million after the tenant opted to transitionits current operations to a new operator.

The company, in a statement after market close April 6, addedthat it leased 15 former Legend facilities to certain affiliates of The Ensign Groupfor an initial $17.8 million amount, plus an inflation-based annual escalator, undera new 15-year master lease. The transaction, among other things, also provides thatthe company will sell two of its existing facilities containing 245 beds in Texasto Ensign affiliates for $24.6 million.

With the net acquisitions and dispositions, the health care REITsaid its net investment in the 15 facilities will amount to about $211 million.

Shares of National Health Investors rose 0.43% to end the dayat $65.50.

In other property news, a luxury hotel and residential toweris set to rise at Simon Property GroupInc.'s The Galleriaproperty in Houston.

The company said April 7 that the planned mixed-use building is part of its ongoing effortsto redevelop the propertywith a total investment of $250 million.

Simon Property shares shed 0.90% to close at $206.79.

American TowerCorp. is reportedly looking to pump$2 billion more into India as the company's deal to acquire a 51% controlling interest in Indian tower firm ViomNetworks Ltd. received the green light from that country's Cabinet Committee OnEconomic Affairs.

The company is believed to be paying roughly 58.56 billion Indianrupees for the stake acquisition. American Tower currently has a portfolio of roughly14,000 towers in India, which will be merged with Viom as part of the stake acquisition.

American Tower shares gave up 0.66%, closing at $105.00 on Thursday.

In shareholder activism, Consolidated-TomokaLand Co.'s proposal to issue additional common stock is being by Wintergreen Advisers LLC,which argued April 7 that such a move would be "destructive" to shareholderinterests by diluting their equity by more than 23%.

The activist investor, which beneficially owns 26.1% of the company'scommon stock, however, expressed support for the company's plans to engage DeutscheBank Securities Inc. to advise on its exploration of strategic alternatives.

Consolidated-Tomoka Land shares dipped 0.80% to close at $45.91.

Medical PropertiesTrust Inc.'s board has shrunk its size to seven directors with the of L. Glenn Orr Jr.

The company, in a filing after market close April 6, said thatits board named existing director D. Paul Sparks to fill Orr's seat on the compensationcommittee, while resolving not to appoint a replacement on the investments committee.

Shares of Medical Properties were flat on April 7, closing at$12.96.

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Market prices and indexvalues are current as of the time of publication and are subject to change.