Midtown Manhattan office rents dipped 33% in 2009

NEW YORK: Midtown Manhattan office rents fell 33 percent in 2009 as New York’s financial industry cut staff and relinquished space, according to Bloomberg citing a report by commercial property broker FirstService Williams.

Rents in the nation’s most expensive office district slipped to $59.31 a square foot in 4Q2009 and are down almost by half when concessions including temporary free rent are included, the New York-based broker reportedly said on Dec 29.

Financial companies occupy more New York office space than any other non-governmental employer. They cut 25,200 local jobs in the 12 months through November, helping push the city’s unemployment rate to 10 percent according to the New York State Department of Labor, Bloomberg said.

Downtown rents declined 22 percent in 2009 to $38.60 a square foot and availability jumped to 13 percent from 10.5 percent at the end of 2008. Most of the available space downtown was added in the fourth quarter. Between 8 percent and 10 percent of downtown leases signed in 2009 were for financial tenants, according to FirstService’s preliminary numbers.


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