London knocks off New York City as top spot for foreign investors

Washington, D.C., drops to 9th in latest survey

McClatchy Washington BureauJanuary 6, 2014 

London is the top choice for foreign investors, beating New York City, which finished second in a poll released today.

San Francisco ranked third, followed by Houston and Los Angeles. Washington, D.C., fell out of favor as a destination for foreign money, dropping to ninth, after Tokyo, Madrid and Munich. New York ranked first in the previous three years.

The survey was conducted in the fourth quarter of last year by the James A. Graaskamp Center for Real Estate, Wisconsin School of Business. Respondents were members of the Association of Foreign Investors in Real Estate (AFIRE.)

The survey respondents identified the U.S. and Germany as the most stable and secure countries for foreign investment. China, Brazil, Mexico, Columbia and Peru were named as the top emerging markets.

Foreign investors have complained that they're forced to pay too much in federal taxes in the U.S., making the United Kingdom more attractive. They're lobbying for changes to the Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act of 1980, a capital gains tax.

Here's a story from last month on the tax issue:

Does the U.S. tax foreign real estate too much?

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