Each Wednesday, The Wrap presents a compilation of recent noteworthy commercial real estate stories from a variety of publications. Below are links to five stories that caught our eyes in recent days:

Robotic automation impacting real estate industry, consultant says, REIT.com 

Key Excerpt:

“Herrenkohl discussed technology trends that could impact the real estate industry. One is robotic process automation, which Herrenkohl said has the opportunity to reduce lesser-value activity greatly within companies. Robotic process automation software allows employees to focus on more value-added functions, he noted.”

Improving U.S. economics, modest rent growth forecast through 2019, By William Maher, Urban Land Institute

Key Excerpt:

“The latest survey of U.S. real estate economists showed a marked increase in expected economic measures, most likely due to federal proposals to reform the tax code, reduce regulatory burdens, and invest in infrastructure. Compared with the same survey from six months ago, real estate economists have higher expectations about gross domestic product (GDP) growth, employment growth, and housing starts. Consistent with a stronger economy, forecasts for interest rates and inflation have moved higher.”

Medical office buildings becoming a fluid asset for healthcare systems, By Jarred Schenke, Bisnow

Key Excerpt:

“A decade ago, real estate assets owned by a hospital system were the ‘second-largest item on their balance sheet and got the least amount of attention,’ Novant Health senior vice president of construction David Park said. Today, Novant and other health systems see it as a manageable asset, one where owned facilities can be sold as cap rates decline and then repurchased when those rates begin to rise.”

Despite accelerated building, seniors housing is still waiting for pick-up in demand, By Donna Mitchell, NREIOnline.com

Key Excerpt:

“The Seniors Housing Research report comes after a year-long period when development in the segment was slowing down. Under typical circumstances, a real estate segment that is showing signs of oversupply at the tail end of a building boom might be a source of concern for real estate professionals. That is not the case for seniors housing, however, because the industry is expecting a surge of demand in the sector—and not just for one type of property, either.”

Builders test tiny apartments in smaller cities, Multifamily Executive

Key Excerpt:

“Some of these developers are betting that younger renters will prefer smaller, more luxurious spaces over larger, older housing, even if the rent is higher. The micro units at Ollie at Baumhaus, a 127-unit building in Pittsburgh, developed by local firm Vitmore and managed by real estate start-up Ollie, rent for $1,500+ per unit, over half as much as the city’s $979 average apartment rent.”