How Smart Is the Real Estate Smart Beta? Evidence from Optimal Style Factor Strategies for REITs
41 Pages Posted: 24 Sep 2019
Date Written: July 2019
This paper has a twofold objective. First, we contribute to the stream of literature that investigates whether traditional asset pricing factors show any predictive power for the cross-section of Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) returns. In particular, we investigate the existence of a premium associated to the Value, Size, Momentum, Investment, and Profitability factors over the period 1993-2018. We find support for all the pricing factors but for the Profitability one. Second, we investigate whether a set of smart beta strategies, based on the combination of the identified factors, may outperform similar allocation techniques that do not exploit factors. We find that all the proposed factor-based strategies display a higher risk-adjusted out-of-sample performance than a simple buy-and-hold investment in the real estate market (proxied by the FTSE NAREIT All REITs Index). In addition, we find that when factor-based strategies are implemented, REIT-only portfolios display risk-adjusted performances comparable to those of diversified portfolios that include equity, bond, and commodities.
Keywords: REITs, real estate factors, factor investing, smart beta strategies
JEL Classification: G11, G12, R30
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation