As a non-yielding asset, it has a minimal storage cost, so when you compare it to negative-yielding assets, it actually has a positive carry
Gold has a positive carry
compared to negative interest rates," said Osborne.
When we get closer to our cost of deposits in US dollars, then our customers will start to require more interest, so [the banks' advantage from the interest rate developments] will probably be 80 percent [of the total] benefit for us, and then 70 percent, then 60 and 50; but there will always still be a positive carry
on our deposits, after all those accumulated negative carries.
These are: economic fundamentals, inflation expectations (good; Japan is likely to inflate the economy by printing yen, and traditionally real estate does well during inflationary periods, interest rates (good; super low interest rates, ability to borrow (mixed; some progressive Japanese institutions will lend, but most are playing defense on account of their existing problems, positive carry
good; the cost of borrowing in Japan is typically less than the yield, and lastly, relative value negative).
Now that the rental market is better, it would be wrong to penalize the sponsor who can now rent them and have a positive carry