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Boston Properties, partner finance NYC project; Md. casinos post record revenue

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Boston Properties, partner finance NYC project; Md. casinos post record revenue

Commercial real estate

* Boston Properties Inc. and Rudin Development secured a $250 million construction loan for their $410 million project in the Brooklyn Navy Yard in Brooklyn, N.Y., The Wall Street Journal reported. WeWork plans to take 222,000 square feet of space at the 16-story, 675,000-square-foot office building Dock 72.

The financing was provided by lenders led by JPMorgan Chase & Co., M&T Bank Corp. and U.S. Bank.

* LNR Property sold the nearly one million-square-foot James Center office complex in downtown Richmond, Va.'s River District for $108 million, according to a release from Holliday Fenoglio Fowler LP, which brokered the sale. The seller is a subsidiary of Starwood Property Trust Inc.

The asset comprises three office towers with 22, 21 and 14 stories.

* Real estate brokerage giant Cushman & Wakefield Inc. has held talks for a possible listing as early as the third quarter, Bloomberg News reported, citing people with knowledge of the matter. Listing plans have not been formalized yet, and an IPO could be pushed to 2018.

The listing would mark the first time a real estate service firm to go public in the U.S. since Community Healthcare Trust Inc. did so in May 2015, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

* The U.S. Department of Justice has cleared President Donald Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, to work as a senior adviser in the White House, saying his appointment does not violate a federal anti-nepotism law, the New York Post reported. Kushner is believed to be in the process of stepping down as CEO of his family's real estate firm, Kushner Cos., and divesting his assets from the company, the report noted.

* Two plans have been put forward for the James R. Thompson Center state-owned office building in Chicago's Loop, including one that calls for a 1,700-foot tall mixed-use tower that would be the city's tallest building, the Chicago Tribune reported. Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has called for the property to be sold to a developer for demolition and rebuilding.

The second plan includes saving the building and building a 1,340-foot tall hotel and residential skyscraper adjacent to it, according to the report.

* Chicago-based Zeller Realty Group made its first foray into Portland, Ore., with the acquisition of downtown's Umpqua Bank Plaza from Shorenstein Properties, the Portland Business Journal reported. The deal price for the 19-story office property was $90 million, the report said, citing local sources.

* The Los Angeles Times reported, citing CBRE Group Inc., that 2.1 million square feet of office space was absorbed in the fourth quarter of 2016 in Los Angeles and Ventura counties, marking the highest quarterly rate since 2000. There are 2.2 million square feet of office space presently under construction in Greater Los Angeles.

* National Real Estate Investor featured a report on the emergence of industrial flex space that combines creative office and industrial usage under a single roof. The relatively new property type recycles large old industrial buildings that are most popular in urban locations that have an educated young workforce, the report said, citing James Breeze, national director of industrial research at Colliers International.

* Over in Canada, Cadillac Fairview said it agreed to sell a 50% stake in its approximately four million-square-foot Vancouver Portfolio to Ontario Pension Board and the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board. The buyers are acquiring a 25% stake each.

The portfolio includes the CF Pacific Centre shopping center and 12 office properties in downtown Vancouver. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.


* The prospect of eased federal regulations as well as strong buyer demand since Donald Trump's victory in the presidential election have boosted the stock prices of publicly traded homebuilders, adding roughly $6 billion in market value to the sector's largest stocks between Nov. 9, 2016, and Jan. 18, 2017, the San Francisco Business Times reported.

Hovnanian Enterprises Inc. saw a 40% stock price boost during the period, while Comstock Holding Cos. Inc. and Beazer Homes Corp. saw a gain of 29% each, the report said, citing an American City Business Journal analysis of the 24 largest homebuilders. D.R. Horton Inc. and Lennar Corp. witnessed gains of 3% and 8%, respectively.


* The Bureau of Indian Affairs approved the placement of land into trust for the Wilton Rancheria Indian tribe in Elk Grove, Calif., where the tribe plans to develop a $400 million casino resort in partnership with Boyd Gaming Corp., according to the Sacramento Business Journal. The project will include a 302-room hotel tower and one of the Sacramento region's largest convention centers, in addition to 2,000 slot machines as well as table games.

The federal government will take 39.5 acres of land inside an unfinished mall being developed by Howard Hughes Corp.

* Maryland's six casinos, including the recently opened MGM National Harbor, set a record in December 2016 with a combined revenue of approximately $133.5 million, Southern Maryland News Net reported, citing figures from the the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Commission.

The previous record was set in May 2016 at approximately $104.4 million.

The day ahead

Early morning futures indicators pointed to a lower opening for the U.S. market.

In Asia, the Hang Seng climbed 0.06% to 22,898.52, while the Nikkei 225 slid 1.29% to 18,891.03.

In Europe, around midday, the FTSE 100 was down 0.41% to 7,169.13 and the Euronext 100 by 0.21% to 933.25.

On the macro front

No notable reports are due out today.

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