Pension funds, insurance companies and investment institutions increased their investments in real estate by just over four billion euro to nearly 101 billion euro in 2001. Seventy billion euro of this is invested in direct real estate, 31 billion euro in indirect real estate.
It should be mentioned in this respect that the value of real estate fell by 8 billion euro in the first half of 2002 to 62 billion, mainly because the real estate portfolios of some investment institutions were taken over by foreign institutions.
Shift from direct to indirect
In recent years there has been a noticeable shift in real estate investment by institutional investors from direct to indirect real estate. In 1980 only 4 percent of all real estate investment consisted of shares in institutions investing in real estate. Twenty-one years later this has increased to 31 percent. For pension funds, indirect real estate now accounts for more than half of investment in real estate.
Indirect real estate mostly abroad
Investment in foreign institutions investing in real estate accounts for an important and increasing part of investment in indirect real estate. For pension funds 65 percent of indirect real estate in 2001 was invested in foreign institutions, up from 56 percent two years previously.
More invested in homes again
For their domestic investments, pension funds and insurance companies showed a preference for expanding their interests in offices and shops in the period 1980-1995, at the expense of investment in residential projects. Since 1995, however, homes have been gaining favour again. Pension funds in particular have also reduced the foreign share in direct real estate since 1990.