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Firms link up to help public with Reits

Thirty companies have teamed up with the British Property Federation to help raise public awareness of Reits ahead of their introduction next year.

The Reits and Quoted Property Group has 30 members, including the Investment Property Federation, the London Stock Exchange and leading investment banks and consultants including KPMG, Deloitte and Lehman Brothers.

Eight quoted property companies, including Land Securities and nine fund firms including Fidelity, Henderson, Insight and the Scottish Widows Investment Partnership have also signed up.

The group aims to raise understanding of Reits, which are to be introduced on January 1, 2007, among IFAs and investors. It plans a web-based information service and publicity campaign, to be called Reita. The website will give information on Reits, links to providers and share price data.

Group chairman Patrick Sumner says: “Our portal will be the UK’s first non-partisan resource for information on Reits and property investment, providing a definitive reference point.”

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By Rob Burnett, Neptune European Opportunities Fund

In recent months, investors have become more pessimistic about both the European and the US economic outlook and yet stockmarkets have pushed on to new highs. Some would argue that this is a worrying divergence. We would take the opposite view. This appears to be classic bull market behaviour. A wall of worry has been rebuilt, and stockmarket resilience should be taken as a sign of strength. The market is discounting an improving economic outlook ahead, particularly in the south of Europe.

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