10/24/2019

Chinese Reversing Big U.S. Real Estate Buying Spree That Had Helped Boost Prices

Chinese real-estate investors, facing pressure from Beijing, are reversing a yearslong buying spree in the U.S. where they often paid record prices for marquee properties like New York’s Waldorf Astoria hotel.

Chinese insurers, conglomerates, and other investors have turned net sellers of U.S. commercial real estate for the first time in a decade. They have spent tens of billions of dollars to acquire hotels, office buildings, and vast swaths of empty land to build residential towers.

But Chinese investors sold $1.29 billion worth of U.S. commercial real estate in the second quarter, while purchasing only $126.2 million of property, according to data firm Real Capital Analytics. This marked the first time that these investors were net sellers for a quarter since 2008.

The more than $1 billion in net sales reflects how much the Chinese government’s attitude toward investing overseas has changed in recent months.

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