Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) turn 50 this year. They were created in 1960 when President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the REIT Act, which allowed individuals to invest in commercial real estate by buying into a company rather than having to actually purchase a shopping center or office building.
Here's a little more about the history of this investment vehicle and how they rate as an investment today:
1. Real estate investment trust. [Wikipedia]
2. How REITs work. [HowStuffWorks]
3. Job weakness not slowing growth in Apartment REITs. [Barron's]
4. Did REITs actually make the real estate bubble less severe? [Seeking Alpha]
5. 10 high yield REITs: Do the yields justify the risk? [iStockAnalyst]