As the sell-off in commercial real estate stocks and housebuilders continues, a retail property boss has defended the commercial property industry.
Speaking to City A.M., Edward Cooke, chief executive of the British Council of Shopping Centres (BCSC) said: “People are panicking and thinking of their short-term interest.
“But the fundamentals in the occupier market are strong. I think it would be a brave man who would say there won’t be volatility – but I’m confident companies will adjust to market conditions.
“We have a fully functioning market and well-run regulatory system. Those two fundamentals aren’t different.”
Mark Bourgeois, BCSC president and executive director of Capital & Regional, said US, Japanese and European funds are still looking to invest in the UK after the Brexit vote.
Bourgeois said: “I’ve spoken to lots of retailers, and those who have expansion plans are not changing those plans. Consumer confidence needs to stay the same – but I don’t see occupation levels going backwards.”
The commercial real estate sector faced a tough day of trading yesterday after Liberum analysts issued a note saying the risks in the industry had increased.
The sell-off has continued again this morning; at time of writing, Land Securities’ share price was down 4.81 per cent and British Land’s share price had fallen 4.16 per cent.