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2016 is the year of real estate

r Market consensus now has equities flat to negative in 2016. Much of it is due to rate hikes and an end of QE in the U.S. After that, China and oil are to blame for everything else. It’s hard to find an equity bull except at the value funds. Bonds? Forget about it. Outside of a handful of emerging market local currency debt, global bond fund managers are bracing for a drought.

“Volatility is likely to rip through financial markets in the first half of 2016. Today’s turbulence is only the beginning,” says Nigel Green, CEO of deVere Group, a financial advisory firm based in the U.K. “There’s a cocktail of uncertainty, with the main ingredients including China’s economic woes, higher interest rates in the U.S., historically low oil prices, Britain’s referendum on exiting the European Union, and increasing tensions in the Middle East,” he said.

For fixed income, Christopher Wyke of Schroders in London adds his pocket full of six pence to the table: “We are entering a period of a bond bear market that I think will last the next 25 years.”

So where’s the safe haven with a plausible return on investment this year? For Colliers International, 2016 is the year of real estate.

Investor sentiment toward real estate is projected to remain positive this year, according to Colliers Global Investment Outlook, released on Monday. Primary target markets will continue to draw the most interest, with moderating risk appetite, stable economic conditions, and low interest rates driving increased investment in secondary markets. Transactional activity in the first 9 months of 2015 brought in $625 billion of direct property investment worldwide, representing an 11% increase over the same period of 2014, according to Real Capital Analytics. This year, it is expected to be even more.

Of the more than 600 investors surveyed, 52% said they will increase allocations towards real estate this year.

Global transactions are expected to exceed 2014 levels and will approach pre-financial crisis levels.

forbes.com