Digital Realty's (DLR 0.11%) stock price has cratered this year. The data center operator has lost more than 40% of its value, driven down by interest rates and recessionary fears. That sell-off pushed the real estate investment trust's (REIT) dividend yield up to 4.9%.

While the data center REIT is facing some headwinds, the long-term tailwinds that have driven its growth over the years remain firmly in place. Because of that, the sell-off in its share price makes it look like an attractive buy these days, especially for those seeking a data-driven passive income stream.

Battling near-term headwinds

Digital Realty continued to grow in the third quarter. The data center operator's revenue rose 5% year over year to $1.2 billion, while its core funds from operations (FFO) nudged higher, rising from $1.65 per share in last year's Q3 to $1.67 per share. 

However, the company faced some stiff headwinds in the quarter that slowed growth. CEO Bill Stein noted on the Q3 conference call that:

Global capital markets have become extraordinarily volatile and interest rates have risen sharply from historic lows to levels that we have not seen since 2008. At the same time, the U.S. dollar has strengthened against the euro to levels not seen in nearly 20 years. While you've had to look back over 30 years to find the last time the dollar was this elevated against the pound or the yen.

The foreign exchange headwinds had a noticeable effect. On a constant currency basis, core FFO would have been $1.75 per share in the quarter. The company now expects they'll have a more significant effect on full-year core FFO than initially expected. It now sees core FFO coming in the range of $6.70 to $6.75 per share, slightly less than the $6.75 to $6.85 per share it projected last quarter due to strengthening foreign exchange headwinds.

The long-term tailwind remains intact

Those headwinds are masking that demand for its data center solutions remains strong. Stein stated on the Q3 call: "Our business continues to be levered to powerful long-term secular demand trends, broadly driven by ongoing digital transformation and the growth in IT and data as our record leasing results underscore." He pointed out, "Our third quarter results were strong with a record $176 million of new bookings, making the third time in the past four quarters that our bookings have exceeded $150 million." 

Stein also stated on the call:

Looking ahead, sales activity remains healthy as the secular trends driving data center demand remain in place. Enterprises continue their digital transformation with a growing preference for hybrid cloud architecture while cloud and connectivity providers continue to expand their infrastructure to better serve their customers around the world.

While the current macroeconomic uncertainty is having a near-term effect on leasing -- sales cycles are lengthening as companies take more time to make decisions -- Digital Realty is pushing prices higher to reflect tightening supplies and rising costs. Overall, Stein "expect(s) the strong secular trends driving demand toward third-party data centers to continue for years to come."

That's leading the company to continue investing in expanding its platform. Digital Realty has a large and growing development pipeline, with 60% of that capacity already pre-leased to customers. However, the company is exercising caution given the macroeconomic uncertainty.

It's "prioritizing and sharpening the lens through which we view new investments to ensure that we are focused on the most strategic transactions that offer the highest potential risk-adjusted returns," according to comments by Stein on the conference call.

Digital Realty is also taking advantage of its pricing power to drive internal growth and enhancing its liquidity to ensure it has the capital needed to meet its commitment. This combination of visible growth and caution positions the REIT to continue growing its dividend despite the near-term headwinds. Digital Realty is one of the few REITs that has increased its payout every year since its initial public offering, a streak that currently stretches 17 years. 

An attractive opportunity

With Digital Realty's stock price tumbling, it trades at a compelling value these days at around 15 times its core FFO and a nearly 5% dividend yield. While it's facing some near-term headwinds, the long-term tailwind of growing data center demand remains firmly in place. Because of that, it looks like a great buy these days for investors looking for data-driven growth and passive income.