The European commercial property sector is enjoying a strong close to the year, with Q3 investment volumes up 20.4% on the same period of 2012 and the market actually seeing its strongest third quarter since before the crisis hit in 2007.
Volumes in the 12 months to Q3 were up 21% to €150.1bn, their highest in 5 years, while quarterly volumes rose 7.5% on Q2 to €36.7bn.
Interest continues to spread to new areas as confidence grows and the market is going though the gears quickly: firstly with demand escalating in core cities, then with interest moving on to second tier core markets, followed by demand spreading to top tier cities in previously overlooked areas like southern Europe, and now with escalating demand for better quality secondary assets in top cities.
With real momentum now building, the sector is set to continue to move quicker than most expect and a strong final quarter is under way, forecast to deliver an annual volume of €147bn, 11% up on last year.
International capital has been a key part of the growth seen in the market although its share of trading activity has been little changed on the year at circa 40%, with domestic demand from institutions, property companies and private players also strong in most areas (albeit in some cases backed by foreign capital).
By sector offices and industrial are performing well, with volumes rising 17% and 35% respectively on the previous quarter.
Retail volumes meanwhile fell back in Q3 by 10% but this is likely to be a temporary fall, with demand strong and an improving supply picture set to boost activity.
Indeed year on year rattail trade is rising, up 31% over the year to Q3. Shopping centres rather than shops or retail warehouses have been the main driver of this and look set to be a highly demanded sector of the market in 2014 and a key part of the significant rise in market activity now forecast.
Source : Cushman & Wakefield