PORTLAND, OR, January 25, 2019 – The National Council of Real Estate Investment Fiduciaries (NCREIF) has released fourth quarter 2018 results of the NCREIF Timberland Index. The index returned 0.97% for the quarter, down from 1.02% last quarter and 1.52% in the fourth quarter 2017. The EBITDDA return, at 0.77%, decreased by 4 basis points from last quarter and increased 2 basis points from a year ago. Appreciation in the fourth quarter increased by 0.20%.
The Total Timberland Index had a 3.44% for the 2018 calendar year return, with a 3.25% EBTIDDA and 0.19% appreciation return.
Timberland Quarterly Total Return Trends by Region
The Northwest and Northeast regions led total returns for fourth quarter 2018. The total return for the Northwest was 2.82%, with an appreciation return of 1.92%. The South saw little growth through 2018, with a fourth quarter total return of 0.12%, driven by a negative appreciation return of -0.58%. The Lake States region was the only region with a negative total return, at -1.22%, due to an EBITDDA and appreciation return of 0.33% and -1.56%, respectively.
Timberland Market Value per Acre in USD by Region
Timberland market value per acre, at $1,848 as of the fourth quarter, saw a slight increase from $1,808 over the past year. Within the regions, the Northeast and the Lake States regions saw the largest percentage impacts to value, with an increase of 8.41% and a decrease of 4.71% year over year, respectively. Market value per acre for the South region remained flat from third quarter 2018 to fourth quarter 2018.
The NCREIF Timberland Index consists of 453 investment-grade timber properties with a market value of $23.1 billion. This includes 307 properties in the South, 91 in the Northwest, 37 in the Northeast, and 17 in the Lake States. This data enhances the ability of institutional investors to evaluate the risk and performance of timberland investments across the United States.