A new Morningstar study of the performance of REITs and private-equity real estate funds over the 20-year period from 1989 to 2009 finds that REITs delivered annualized returns of 9.3%, compared with 6.1% for private-equity opportunity funds, 4.4% for core funds and 3.7% for value-added funds. "Morningstar's research supports the case for pension funds and other institutional investors to re-evaluate their real estate allocations to achieve a better balance between public and private investments," said NAREIT's Michael Grupe.

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