Areas of Expertise (7)
As faculty director of The Daniel M. DiLella Center for Real Estate at Villanova School of Business, Dr. Shawn Howton has broad expertise in commercial real estate, mortgage backed securities and corporate governance. His area of specialization focuses on Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs). He teaches classes on fixed income markets, real estate investments and structured products, and has researched these topics as well as real estate investments, real estate investment trusts and corporate social responsibility.
Florida State University: PhD
Southern Illinois University: MBA
Southern Illinois University: BS
Select Accomplishments (5)
American Real Estate Society Practitioner Award (professional)
Conferred for most interesting paper for practitioners (2015)
Red Pen Award (professional)
Journal of Real Estate Portfolio Management, Best reviewer. (2013)
Summer Research Fellowship (professional)
Villanova University (2008, 2007, 2003, 2000)
Research Excellence Award (professional)
Center for Responsible Leadership and Governance (2004. 2007)
Teaching Innovation Award (professional)
Villanova University (2004)
- American Real Estate Society
Select Media Appearances (5)
Closing the deal: Florida State Real Estate program shines at national competition
Florida State University News online
'Villanova Professor of Finance Shawn Howton was impressed. Howton, who earned a doctoral degree from Florida State, said FSU’s real estate teams always come to the competition well prepared. But Flemister, Langborgh, Smith and Walsh really made a compelling impression.'
Posh health club to take over Macy's building in Suburban Square as Ardmore evolves
'The health club and beauty services could help Kimco boost traffic at Suburban Square substantially, drawing more frequent visits than Macy’s ever could, said Shawn Howton, faculty director at Villanova University’s Daniel M. DiLella Center for Real Estate.'
How to Invest in Real Estate Through REITs
US News online
'"The biggest short-term headwind is rising interest rates and the effect they have on real estate valuations and economic activity," says Shawn Howton, a finance professor at Villanova University.'
Villanova’s real estate competition inspires a judge
Philadelphia Business Journal online
On Friday I spent the day at Villanova University’s first real estate challenge and came away inspired and confident in the competence of the next generation of developers and brokers who will eventually shape the built environment. For those of you in commercial real estate, your mentoring of these young people will be invaluable to them and may leave you humbled.
The competition was hosted by the Daniel M. DiLella Center for Real Estate that is in the university’s school of business, and organized by Shawn Howton, the center’s director, and Tim Hoffman, its associate director. Ten colleges — American University, Baruch College, Florida State University, Lehigh University, New York University, Penn State, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, University of Pennsylvania, Virginia Commonwealth University and Villanova — competed.
Villanova joins investors, builders to talk real estate collapse
The Philadelphia Inquirer online
To talk about the troubled property markets: Villanova University's business school is hosting:
Dan DiLella, chief executive of office landlord BPG Properties; Brent Morris, of Capmark Investments; Joel Rassman, chief financial officer at homebuilder Toll Bros.; Richard Parkus of Deutsche Bank; Brian DiDonato of Sorin Capital Management; and UNC Prof. David Hartzell, at Connelly Center's Villanova Room, 800 Lancaster Ave., 6 pm tomorrow, Thursday Oct. 1, says Shawn D. Howton, finance prof and director of the Daniel M. DiLella Center for Real Estate.
Select Academic Articles (5)
Shawn D. Howton, Shelly W. Howton, Benjamin Scheick
This article examines changes in real estate investment around the establishment of at-the-market (ATM) equity programs by equity REITs. We document a significant increase in the rate of investment following an ATM program announcement and its subsequent use. However, we find that ATM access has a differential impact on the investment activity of REITs facing more significant financial constraints. We also provide further evidence that REITs with ATM programs generate positive long-run returns in excess of that of similarly timed SEOs.
Shawn Howton, Shelly Howton, Johnny Lee, and Mi Luo
Prior research on the impact of real estate investment trust (REIT) ownership on property performance is very limited and provides inconclusive empirical evidence. Whether REITs add value at the micro-level remains a puzzle. Utilizing a dataset of detailed accounting information for individual hotels across five states in the United States, we re-examine the performance of REIT-owned properties. Unlike prior research that focuses on revenue-based performance measures, we examine both the top-line and bottom-line performance of hotel operations. We find that REIT ownership favorably impacts property performance in that REIT-owned hotels have higher profit margins than other lodging properties. The greater cost efficiency is likely attributable to savings in non-distributed operating expenses and fixed charges. We document no outperformance by REITs in revenue growth at the individual property level.
Shawn D. Howton, Shelly Howton, Johnny Lee, Mi Luo
Vol. 18, No. 2 (May–August 2012), pp. 169-186. Prior research on the impact of REIT ownership on property performance is very limited and provides inconclusive empirical evidence. Whether REITs add value at the microlevel remains a puzzle. Utilizing a dataset of detailed accounting information for individual hotels across 5 US states, we re-examine the performance of REIT-owned properties. Unlike prior research that focuses on revenue-based performance measures, we examine both the top-line and bottom-line performance of hotel operations. We find that REIT ownership favorably impacts property performance in that REIT-owned hotels have higher profit margins than other lodging properties. The greater cost efficiency is likely attributable to savings in non-distributed operating expenses and fixed charges. We document no outperformance by REITs in revenue growth.
Jonathan P. Doh, Shawn D. Howton, and Shelly W. Howton
A consensus has emerged in the burgeoning literature on corporate social responsibility (CSR) that “virtuous” firms are often rewarded by the marketplace. Unfortunately, the mechanisms through which those rewards materialize are not well understood. Furthermore, it is difficult for managers and investors to know whether a company is actually engaged in responsible behavior. Thus, many stakeholders rely on institutional assessments of a firm’s social practices to inform their own judgments about that company’s CSR reputation. In this article, we draw on institutional theory and research on reputation and legitimacy to investigate the relationship between institutional endorsements (and repudiation) of CSR and firm financial performance. Our empirical results indicate that institutional intermediaries influence market assessments of a firm’s social responsibility and highlight the importance of the legitimacy-conferring function of expert bodies in understanding the relationship between social and financial performance. Our findings also illustrate the delicate interplay among different social performance assessments, reputation, and measures of financial and operating performance such that operating performance may serve as an advanced indicator of social performance and one type of social performance assessment may temper market reactions to another.
Hartzell, D., Howton, S. D., Howton, S. W., Scheick, B.
This paper examines at-the-market (ATM) equity programs as an additional source of financial flexibility. We find that firms with higher market-to-book ratios and greater institutional ownership are more likely to announce an ATM program. Firms using ATM programs are also more likely to issue shares when they have exhausted other viable financing alternatives, have timely investment opportunities, and when market conditions are favorable. Finally, we document a significant negative announcement effect around the establishment of an ATM program, though the magnitude of this effect is significantly less negative than that of a comparable SEO.