REITs did surprisingly well last year given the troubles in the commercial real estate market. Analysts are warning, though, that investors still need to be cautious when investing in REITs, at least for this year. But REITs remain an important part of a diversification strategy, says Lidiette Ratiana, who works at Well Fargo's wealth management unit. "REITs and REIT mutual funds remain a very important part of our diversified four asset-class formation. Real assets are always going to be a part of that formation, and we will continue to use REITs and REIT mutual funds as part of the platform."

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