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  • Value Added Tax in the GCC

    Details on the new VAT established in the region covered by the GCC, including implementation best practices and documentation requirements. By Tanya Venegas, MBA, MHM, CHIA

  • Members Only: A Room for Robots in Hospitality

    Realistic uses for artificial intelligence are increasing, making way for machine-based assistance in accounting, marketing, customer service and more. This feature details current scenarios where robotics is used in the business environment, such as for accounting tasks.

  • Letter from the HFTP Global President: A New Year Equals New Possibilities

    Written By: Timothy G. Nauss, CHAE - We are officially in the year 2018. Now is the ideal time to reflect on the successes of the old year, and prepare to make this new year the best one ever. Just as we set goals for ourselves to make us healthier, happier and more successful, HFTP as an organization sets goals each year to better meet the needs of our members and the hospitality industry.

  • GDPR in Hospitality: Vendor Compliance Query Template Available to Industry

    As a professional association, Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP®) created a group of hospitality industry experts to develop hospitality-specific guidelines to assist with preparation for General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) compliance.

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Blackstone Is Said to Reach $1.1 Billion Deal for Maui Resort

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·10 January 2018
Blackstone Group LP reached an agreement to acquire a luxury resort on the Hawaiian island of Maui for about $1.1 billion, according to a person with knowledge of the deal. The private equity firm plans to buy Grand Wailea from GIC Pte, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the purchase hasn’t been made public. Representatives for Blackstone and GIC declined to comment.
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CMBS Issuance Was Higher Than Expected in 2017. Can the Trend Continue?

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·10 January 2018
The CMBS market is kicking off 2018 with a lot more confidence than was the case a year ago. In 2016, everyone was living in fear of risk retention rules and what they were going to do to the CMBS market, notes Tom Fish, executive managing director and co-lead of the real estate investment banking practice at real estate services firm JLL. People were worried that the new rules that went into effect last January would slow issuance, significantly increase pricing and tilt the playing field in favor of bigger players.
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Airbnb Defeats Aimco Lawsuit Over Unauthorized Subleases

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)· 2 January 2018
Airbnb Inc. defeated a lawsuit by Apartment Investment & Management Co., one of the largest residential landlords in the U.S., alleging that the online home-sharing marketplace enables tenants to break their lease agreements through unauthorized sublets. A federal judge in Los Angeles agreed with Airbnb that it’s insulated from the claims by the Communications Decency Act, a 1996 law that shields online service providers from liability for the content users post.
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Silicon Valley Will Soon See a 'Mass Migration' of Tech Companies and Talent, Says Redfin CEO

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·27 December 2017
Amazon's search for a second headquarters is just the beginning of a Silicon Valley exodus, Glenn Kelman told CNBC.
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Are Miami Beach's Luxury Towers the Future of Climate Resilience?

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·20 December 2017
The Monad Terrace—a 59-unit Miami Beach luxury condominium—hasn’t been built yet, but its salesroom is up and running. Set on the ground floor of an office building a few blocks from the Monad’s bayfront building site, the space re-creates the look and feel of a model apartment in hopes that its white marble bathroom, open-plan kitchen, and glassy bedroom might persuade buyers to spend from $1.7 million (for a 2,027-square-foot apartment) to $12 million (13,922 square feet) before the building is complete.
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The Tax Bill Is a Clear Boon to the CRE Industry. Will It Prove Too Much of a Good Thing?

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·20 December 2017
In a first major legislative victory for the Republican Party since President Trump took office, the House and Senate have passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. The $1.5 trillion bill marks the first major overhaul of the U.S. tax code since 1986 and is expected to be a great boon for commercial property owners. Industry analysts predict the new tax code will strengthen demand in the multifamily sector and spur corporations to put more money into real estate assets and new development, in addition to preserving or improving most of the existing tax breaks for real estate investors.
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Senate Passes U.S. Tax Overhaul Putting GOP on Brink of Big Win

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·20 December 2017
Senate Republicans passed the most extensive rewrite of the U.S. tax code in more than 30 years, a bill that delivers a deep, permanent tax cut for corporations and shorter-term relief for individuals. The chamber’s 51-48 party line vote just before 12:45 a.m. Wednesday in Washington brought President Donald Trump to the brink of his first major legislative victory. The bill -- which has scored poorly in public opinion polls -- promises to become one of the biggest issues in the 2018 elections that will determine whether the GOP retains its majorities in Congress.
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REITs Outperforming Sector's Long-Term Average in 2017

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·20 December 2017
REITs have outperformed the industry’s long-term average in 2017 despite underperforming the broader stock market, according to Brad Case, Nareit senior vice president for research and industry information. As of Dec. 15, total returns of the FTSE Nareit All REITs Index were 10.2 percent for the year. Returns in the broader market were dominated by large-cap stocks, especially tech stocks, Case said. That, in turn, made REIT investments look relatively weak.
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Construction Loans Not Hard To Find for Multifamily Projects

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·19 December 2017
Apartment developers can still get the money they need to build new apartment projects from banks and other lenders. Though the terms are getting tougher, banks continue to put more money into apartment construction. “While banks may have eased off the multifamily/commercial real estate gas pedal, they are still growing their commercial real estate book,” says Justin Bakst, director of capital market analytics at research firm CoStar Group.
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Cities Tell Airbnb, Like Uber, to Grow Up: Leonid Bershidsky

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·13 December 2017
With Uber's problems grabbing all the headlines, it's easy to overlook the fact that the other great "sharing economy" company, Airbnb, is also having issues caused by an overaggressive expansion and a tendency to ignore rules, even if they're reasonable. Because of these issues, usage of the service may be nearing its peak.
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Non-Traded REITs Poised for a Comeback

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·13 December 2017
Non-traded REITs that have been watching capital flee the sector are expecting to see the tide turn with more investors returning in 2018. Investment banking firm Robert A. Stanger & Co. is predicting that fundraising for non-traded REITs will reach $4.2 billion this year, which is down from the $4.5 billion the sector raised in 2016 and the lowest level in more than 15 years. There are numerous factors that have contributed to the sharp decline that is well below the peak of $20 billion raised in 2013.
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Will Middle Eastern Real Estate Investors Remain on the Sidelines?

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)· 7 December 2017
Incoming capital from the Middle East into the U.S. real estate sector totaled $4.057 billion in the third quarter—a decline of 71 percent compared to the same time last year.
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Struggling with Vacancy? You May Get a Break on Property Taxes

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)· 5 December 2017
In many states, abnormally high vacancy at commercial properties should mean a lower tax bill. Market transaction evidence essentially dictates this result: States that assess taxable value on commercial properties based on market value, as though leased at market rents, should allow a deduction from that value when the property incurs above-market vacancy and collection losses.
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What to Expect at ICSC's New York Deal Making Show

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·30 November 2017
At next week’s International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) New York Deal Making Conference, which will feature more exhibition space than ever, the focus likely will continue to be on the evolution of the omnichannel shopper and alternative uses of retail spaces.
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Fed Says Price Pressures Rising With Economic Growth Steady

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·30 November 2017
The U.S. economy grew at a modest to moderate pace through mid-November as price pressures strengthened and the labor market tightened, a Federal Reserve survey showed.
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House Passes Tax Bill in First Step Toward Historic Overhaul

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·16 November 2017
House Republicans passed their version of legislation to overhaul the U.S. tax code by slashing the corporate tax rate, lowering tax burdens for most individuals and adding an estimated $1.4 trillion to the federal deficit over the next decade.
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Construction Costs Rise for Apartment Projects

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·14 November 2017
The cost of construction is rising again. Trade disputes, hurricanes and rising demand from overseas are all pushing up the price of materials from gypsum wallboard to lumber and steel. And a shortage of labor is pushing construction workers’ wages higher.
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Carried Interest Likely to Change in Senate: Toomey

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·10 November 2017
The carried interest tax break for investment managers is likely to change in the Senate, even though the chamber’s current tax proposal doesn’t call for it, according to Senator Pat Toomey, a Pennsylvania Republican.

One Tax Loophole Untouched So Far: the Trump Golf-Course Break

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·10 November 2017
While Republicans are eliminating many write-offs, the House version of the bill allows golf-course owners to claim deductions for promising never to build on their
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E-Commerce Is Driving Industrial Development to Record Highs

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)·10 November 2017
U.S. industrial real estate development hit an all-time high in 2017, with more than 208 million sq. ft. completed so far, and another 277 million sq. ft. currently under construction, according to research firm CoStar. Real estate services firm JLL is seeing similar trends, according to Mason Mularoni, JLL senior research analyst. Last year, a total of about 164 million sq. ft. of new industrial space was completed in JLL’s calculations.

Hotel Owners Ambushed by Saudi, Chinese, U.S. Geopolitics

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)· 7 November 2017
Hotels used to be gauged by the campaign strategy that won the presidency for Bill Clinton: it’s the economy, stupid. Nowadays, politics may determine their future. The latest upheaval came with the arrest over the weekend of billionaire Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, whose Kingdom Holding Co. is co-owner of Four Seasons Hotels Ltd. and New York’s Plaza Hotel.
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Tax Proposal Could Cut MBS Issuance by $30 Billion, Analysts Say

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)· 6 November 2017
U.S. agency mortgage bond supply could shrink by $30 billion under the proposed House Republican tax bill, which cuts into consumers’ deductions of interest for housing loans and could raise the cost of home buying, according to JPMorgan Chase & Co. analysts.
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Carried Interest Tax Break May Be Changed, House Tax Chief Says

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)· 6 November 2017
The carried interest tax break that provides an advantage for investment managers would be revised under changes the House’s chief tax writer says he’s planning. House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady said on CNBC Monday morning that he intends to attach a “two-year holding period” to carried interest. The tax break is used widely among private-equity managers, venture capitalists, certain real estate investors and hedge fund managers.
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How HNW Investors Can Compete with Deep-Pocketed Foreign and Institutional Players

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)· 6 November 2017
As foreign and institutional investors jockey for U.S. commercial real estate assets, experts offer this guidance to high-net-worth (HNW) investors and family offices that might be feeling a bit like bystanders: be a contrarian. Taking that advice to heart, many HNW investors and family offices are hunting for assets in secondary and tertiary markets, rather than in super-competitive “gateway” cities.
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CRE Economists Say New Fed Chair Nominee Not Likely to Rattle the Market

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)· 3 November 2017
President Donald Trump last Thursday nominated Federal Reserve governor Jerome Powell as the central bank’s new chairman. Real estate economists do not expect Powell to force dramatic changes in monetary policy.
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Trump's Promised Tax Overhaul Bends Toward Business Benefits

National Real Estate Investor (NREI)· 3 November 2017
President Donald Trump and congressional Republicans billed their tax overhaul for months as a benefit primarily for the middle class, but what they delivered Thursday was designed more to favor large corporations and some closely held businesses.

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