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CBRE: UK commercial property up most in nine years

LONDON: British commercial property values in November made the biggest monthly gain since records began nine years ago, rising 2.7% and marking the fifth consecutive monthly increase, the latest CB Richard Ellis Monthly Index found.

Values have been rising steadily since July when they were down 44% from the last peak reached in mid-2007.

The growth in November was led by retail warehouses and shopping centres, up 4% and 3.9% respectively, boosting total returns -- comprising rental income and capital growth -- to a record 3.4%, consultant CBRE said.

"The strength and depth of current investor demand seems destined to lead to a continuation of the very strong returns seen in recent months into next year," David Wylie, head of Economics and Forecasting at CBRE, said.

"However, the prospect of more significant increases in supply coming through, and the generally weak rental growth outlook, may act as a brake on the strength of the recent recovery," he said.

Average rental values continued to fall, down 0.3% in November albeit at a slower pace than the previous month, and are 9.3% lower compared with a year ago, CBRE said.

A rising chorus of investors have warned of a short-lived recovery for the UK's commercial property market, Europe's second-largest after Germany, if values rise too quickly without growth in the economy and rents. -- Reuters
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