Consumers in Florida and around the country are doing more of their spending online, and many of the nation's biggest brick-and-mortar retailers are struggling to keep their doors open as a result. The commercial real estate market reflects the economy as a whole, and demand for warehouse space is strong while malls across the country are closing. A sluggish retail sector has not helped, and the Federal Reserve has taken action in recent months partly to curb real estate speculation.
The financial sector currently holds more than $3.8 trillion in commercial real estate loans, and more than half of this debt is held by the nation's banks. Reports suggest that American banks with less than $50 billion in assets are particularly vulnerable, and experts say that loans could become more difficult for developers to obtain as risks are balanced and portfolios trimmed.