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REIT Replay: Keeping it 500

The broader markets traded up, with the S&P 500 closing ata record high Friday, July 22. REITs also posted gains a day after the Weisman Groupannounced a higher takeover bid for Ashford Hospitality Prime.

The MSCI US REIT Index (RMZ) rose 0.87% to 1,267.32, and theSNL US REIT Equity Index gained 0.80% to finish at 338.34. The Dow Jones IndustrialAverage inched up 0.29% to close at 18,570.85, while the S&P 500 surged 0.46%to end the day at 2,175.03.

Ashford HospitalityPrime Inc. received an increasedtakeover bid from Weisman Group LLC after weeks of discussions between the parties regarding fair .

The investor, which controls roughly 5.3% of the REIT's outstandingshares, revealed in a letter publicized Thursday that it raised its offer to $1.54billion, or roughly $23.65 per share. The new offer price equates to $20.58 pershare after allocating a $70 million termination fee payable to external managerAshford Inc.

Viewing the new offer price as "a full and fair value"for the REIT, Canaccord Genuity Inc. analyst Ryan Meliker posited that it is highlylikely that a deal could be reached between the parties.

"While the $20.58 price is below our NAV estimate, we alsobelieve it is higher than any level the stock would achieve at any point in theforeseeable future," Meliker said in a Thursday note. "[A] fiscally responsibleboard would consider this bid to be in the best interest of shareholders,"he said.

Ashford Hospitality Prime shares ticked up 0.93% to close at$15.26.

In earnings news, CrownCastle International Corp. posteda 15% year-over-year FFO gain during the second quarter, thanks in part to a "healthyleasing environment." The company also boosted its financial guidance for thefull year.

Crown Castle shares inched 0.61% higher, closing at $98.87.

On the property front, a consolidated joint venture between and the QatarInvestment Authority paid $225 million to buythe 365,000-square-foot office property at 12100 Wilshire Blvd. in Los Angeles.

The company after market close Thursday said the transactionincreases its ownership share of the Brentwood class A office market to 61% from50%.

Douglas Emmett shares gained 0.44% to close at $36.76.

Hersha HospitalityTrust purchaseda recently launched boutique hotel in Boston's Seaport District for $70.8 million.The Envoy Hotel has 136 rooms and was sold by Norwich Partners, according to a Thursdayreport in the Boston Business Journal.

Hersha shares surged 1.04% to $19.41.

Corporate OfficeProperties Trust disclosed after markets closed Thursday that it hasteamed up with an affiliate of private investment firm GI Partners to a 50/50 joint venture focusedon data center facilities.

The company contributed six of its single-tenant data centerfacilities to the joint venture for proceeds of $104 million. The GI affiliate acquiredits stake in the venture for roughly $44 million.

Corporate Office shares slipped 0.31%, closing at $29.15.

In executive moves, SmartReal Estate Investment Trust said after markets closed Thursday thatit appointed Peter Fordeas president, a promotionfrom his role as the company's COO.

Smart REIT shares added 0.77%, ending the day at C$38.14.

Now featured onS&P Global Market Intelligence:

The Week in USReal Estate: Ashford Prime gets sweetened offer; RioCan buying out partner in Canadianassets: The July 22 weekly news roundup in the North American real estatespace also features big-buck property deals, quarterly results from large-cap REITs,a completed merger and another possible deal in the works.

Research Roundup:Friday, North America real estate edition: Two initiations, an upgradeand a downgrade are featured in this roundup of recent research reports.

Best of SNL: RealEstate, editors' picks: Our real estate editors' picks for the beststories of the week ending July 22.

Best of SNL: RealEstate, most read: The 10 most read real estate articles for the weekending July 22.

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