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Fed Says Rising CRE Prices an Area of Concern


As part of its annual report to Congress, the Federal Reserve indicates that the US commercial real estate market is a source of concern. The report states that “valuation pressures” are rising while underwriting standards at banks and in commercial mortgage-backed securities markets are loosening, keeping the Fed on the lookout for signs of another bubble. The report was released as part of Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen’s semiannual testimony to Congress. Yellen said the US central bank is on track to raise rates this year as the economy improves despite continuing global threats, reports the Wall Street Journal. The report also indirectly suggested that the stock market isn’t overpriced, differing from Yellen’s comments on May 6 when she said equities market valuations were “generally quite high.” While The Fed generally takes a hands-off approach to the markets, Fed chiefs have historically shared comments that show how closely they keep their fingers on the pulse of the markets. [WSJ]