Research report

Implications of a transformed CRE lending market

A new report from Chief Market Strategist Troy Gayeski.

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December 7, 2021 | 17 minute read

The global financial crisis (GFC) and the subsequent regulatory and government response changed capital market and economic dynamics in enduring and profound ways. Most of the policies that were implemented sought to strengthen the banking system’s resilience to future crises and reduce the potential for a banking system collapse to be a mortal threat to the global economy. Roughly 13 years later, markets faced a devastating pandemic followed by a remarkable capital market and economic recovery. With the benefit of hindsight, one can conclude that the post-financial crisis regulatory framework for the banking system was extremely successful; the banking system proved resilient to acute economic and market stresses in the darkest days of the pandemic and was in position to assume the responsibility of dramatically ramping up lending through the CARES Act Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). The banking system arguably finds itself now in better health than when the pandemic began: higher Tier I capital, an even greater hoard of excess/total reserves, and loan loss reserves declining at a historic rate—a sign that the excess cash that banks set aside for losses related to the pandemic was ultimately not needed.

However, the resilience of the banking system came with at least one major trade-off: Banks have become increasingly disintermediated from both capital markets and the real economy. On one hand, this has resulted in periods of massive price inefficiencies in capital markets, with knock-on effects throughout the economy. On the other hand, it has created a significant opportunity for alternative lenders and providers of capital.

This information is educational in nature and does not constitute a financial promotion, investment advice or an inducement or incitement to participate in any product, offering or investment. FS Investments is not adopting, making a recommendation for or endorsing any investment strategy or particular security. All views, opinions and positions expressed herein are that of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions or positions of FS Investments. All opinions are subject to change without notice, and you should always obtain current information and perform due diligence before participating in any investment. FS Investments does not provide legal or tax advice and the information herein should not be considered legal or tax advice. Tax laws and regulations are complex and subject to change, which can materially impact any investment result. FS Investments cannot guarantee that the information herein is accurate, complete, or timely. FS Investments makes no warranties with regard to such information or results obtained by its use, and disclaims any liability arising out of your use of, or any tax position taken in reliance on, such information.

Any projections, forecasts and estimates contained herein are based upon certain assumptions that the author considers reasonable. Projections are necessarily speculative in nature, and it can be expected that some or all of the assumptions underlying the projections will not materialize or will vary significantly from actual results. The inclusion of projections herein should not be regarded as a representation or guarantee regarding the reliability, accuracy or completeness of the information contained herein, and neither FS Investments nor the author are under any obligation to update or keep current such information.

All investing is subject to risk, including the possible loss of the money you invest.

Troy A. Gayeski, CFA

Chief Market Strategist

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