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Real estate dominating Canadian debt deals Add to ...

There is a reason you keep seeing stories about powerful Canadian real estate companies, like the Globe’s lunch with RioCan’s chief executive officer Edward Sonshine, or a sneak peek at what Oxford Properties has coming: these firms are looking to grow.

To do that, they need acquisition funds, which prompted four of them to tap the market for new debt last week. Not only were the funds successfully raised, but all of the issues were upsized, according to Desjardins Securities.

The issuers included RioCan REIT , which raised $225-million to redeem $180-million of outstanding debt that paid 8.33 per cent annually; First Capital Realty , which raised $150-million; Cadillac Fairview Finance Trust, the real estate funding vehicle of the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, which raised $2-billion in two parts; and H&R REIT , which raised $180-million.

At the end of last week, real estate debt comprised about one-third of all new Canadian debt to date in 2011. Taking out the bank issuances, it blows every other sector out of the water.

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