Bad credit could affect office space

Janet Babin Nov 20, 2008
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Bad credit could affect office space

Janet Babin Nov 20, 2008
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Steve Chiotakis: The next shoe to drop in the credit crisis could come from the bonds backed by commercial real estate loans. Prices for warehouse, retail and office space have dropped recently in much of the country. They could lead to more bank write downs and trouble for companies trying to get credit. From North Carolina Public Radio, here’s Marketplace’s Janet Babin.


Janet Babin: The value of bonds backed by U.S. commercial real estate loans cratered for a second day yesterday. Investors are worried that the sour economy will lead to a new wave of defaults, this time on commercial loans, that financed office buildings, retail stores and hotels.

The loans were made with the expectation that rents would continue to rise. But now, those loans are defaulting. And tight credit has made it nearly impossible to refinance.

A report from Standard and Poors found that commercial real estate prices were down more than 1.5 percent from last year. That’s the first annual decline in almost 15 years.

So now, commercial mortgage-backed securities are just as risky as those residential mortgage-backed securities that decimated the big New York investment banks.

I’m Janet Babin for Marketplace.

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