Shopping center owner Westfield Group sees bottom
Peter Lowy, managing director of the world's largest owner of shopping centers, Westfield Group, told Bloomberg in a TV interview that property values in the U.S., U.K., Australia and New Zealand have bottomed out, and his company won't need to raise new capital by selling shares of stock. He said that he expects stabilization in all the markets in which Westfield operates, and that the company has the resources for future needs from its own sources. That's good news because many economists have been indicating the commercial marketplace isn't yet near the bottom.
Westfield raised $3.3 billion in equity and $3 billion in debt since the start of the year to beef up its balance sheet after $2.9 billion in asset writedowns in the first half of the year. Westfield owns 55 shopping malls in the U.S., where commercial properties lost 27 percent this year through June, according to Moody's Investor Services.