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Articles Tagged with Dividend Capital REIT

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According to stock fraud lawyers, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority has and will continue to relentlessly target non-traded real estate investment trusts, or REITs. Specifically, the regulatory authority is focusing on how broker-dealers sell these investments and potential shortcomings in their strategies. According to the Executive Vice President of Member Regulation Sales Practices at FINRA, Susan Axelrod, examiners at FINRA have been scrutinizing “numerous retail sellers of non-traded REITs.” Axelrod also stated that, “In several instances, FINRA examiners have found that firms selling these products failed to conduct reasonable diligence before selling a product and failed to make a determination that the product was suitable for investors.”

FINRA Targets Non-traded REITs

Investment fraud lawyers note that independent broker-dealers have a responsibility to perform adequate due diligence when selling any investment, especially complex, illiquid products. Since the 2008 market collapse, FINRA has been aggressive with broker-dealers who failed to do so. Axelrod stated to the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association’s Complex Products Forum that, “FINRA examiners have noted that in the instances of REITs that have experienced financial difficulties, red flags existed and should have been considered by firms prior to the product being offered to firm clients.”

Another problem with non-traded REITs, according to Axelrod, is that “non-traded REITs may also borrow funds to make distributions if operating cash flow is insufficient, and excessive borrowing may increase the risk of default or devaluation. In addition, non-traded-REIT distributions may actually be a return on principal.”

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Securities fraud attorneys have been investigating claims on behalf of investors who suffered Dividend Capital Trust investment losses, but what exactly went wrong?

What Went Wrong with Dividend Capital REIT: What Many Investors Didn't Know

According to investment fraud lawyers, while most REITs experience value changes every day because they are traded on stock exchanges, “non-traded,” “private,” or “unlisted” REITs were not traded on exchanges with regulations. Furthermore, these investors of non-traded REITs paid additional layers of fees because the investments were mostly sold by brokers. Generally, investors were promised stable prices and healthy income generation from these investments, but the decline in the commercial real estate market and management problems have resulted in a significant decline in the value of many non-traded REITs.

Many brokers unsuitably recommended non-traded REITs; after all, they were extremely profitable to them thanks to the hefty fees associated with the investment. Many brokers told investors that the REITs values would remain the same while providing income, but many non-traded REITs have temporarily — or indefinitely — suspended payments to investors. That said, securities fraud attorneys note that most public REITs that have been responsibly managed are providing reliable income to their investors.

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Securities arbitration lawyers are currently investigating claims on behalf of investors who suffered significant losses as a result of their investment in eight of the biggest non-traded REITs, including Dividend Capital Total Realty Trust Inc. According to a recent analysis, over the last seven years, eight of the biggest REITs have lost 37 percent of their equity value, or around $11.3 billion.

Dividend Capital REIT and Seven Other Non-Traded REITs Suffer Significant Losses

In July, Dividend Capital Total Realty Trust Inc. revised its per share value to $6.69, down from its March value of $8.45 per share. The Dividend Capital REIT raised $1.8 billion at a $10 per share price. Dividend Capital REIT president, Guy Arnold, failed to return calls seeking comment on the REIT’s performance. For more information about the Dividend Capital REIT, see the previous blog post, “Dividend Capital REIT Restructuring Could be a Sign of Trouble.”

Another non-traded REIT, CNL Lifestyle Properties Inc., experienced a share price drop to $7.31. The CNL Lifestyle Properties REIT raised $2.7 billion at a $10 per share price, according to investment fraud lawyers.

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Since the writing of the previous blog post “Dividend Capital Total Realty Trust Non-traded REIT Investors Could Recover Losses,” investment fraud lawyers have received communication from investors related to their concerns about the value of their shares. Reportedly, the quarterly dividend rate of these shares is 5.23 percent and the new price of each share is $6.69. The investment’s prospectus for Dividend Capital shares and its recent Securities and Exchange Commission filing indicate new terms for repurchase plans and a major restructuring of the investment. In addition, Dividend Capital Total Realty Trust appears to be going by a new name, Dividend Capital Diversified Property Fund.

Dividend Capital REIT Restructuring Could be a Sign of Trouble

This new offering is purportedly a means for the company to offer liquidity, securities fraud attorneys say. Generally, non-traded REIT shares are illiquid but, when the REIT is liquidated, are sold to another REIT, or goes public, the shares are sold. The SEC filing states that the offering is intended to replenish the capital of their fund shares. As a result, they will not have to list a termination date, should one of the aforementioned events occur. This new plan is scheduled to go into effect on October 1, 2012 and purportedly allows investors to liquidate shares at any time. The price of the shares at liquidation is determined by the company’s Net Asset Value’s daily calculation. However, restrictions on this plan include the following:

  • While Class A, W or I shares may be redeemed at any time, a “Quarterly Cap” has been instituted by Dividend Capital, which will limit redemptions equal to 5 percent of the total Net Asset Value of all shares set upon completion of the prior calendar quarter.
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