Signed Office Leases in Manhattan Surpass Pre-Pandemic Levels

Signed Office Leases in Manhattan Surpass Pre-Pandemic Levels

Commercial News » New York City Edition | By Monsef Rachid | December 28, 2021 8:37 AM ET

New York City Sublease Space Slowly Declines

According to new data from CBRE, Manhattan ranked third among the 12 largest cities in the country for office market recovery in November 2021 with multiple measures of demand showing steady progress. Manhattan experienced an increased volume of leasing activity as companies actively searched for new space, along with a decline in the amount of sublease space put on the market.

To gauge the pace of recovery, CBRE's monthly report tracks the three leading indicators of office market activity: tenants-in-the-market (TIM), which quantifies the amount of office space that companies are actively seeking; leasing activity in the form of finalized lease agreements; and the availability of sublease space.

"With space requirements at 99% of the pre-pandemic level and signed leases surpassing the pre-Covid number, companies demonstrated clear confidence in the Manhattan office market during November," said Nicole LaRusso, CBRE Senior Director of Research & Analysis. "A slow but steady decline in sublease space also shows that the Manhattan office market is continuing to improve."

For each index, a reading of 100 equates to the pre-pandemic levels of 2018 and 2019.

Manhattan's Tenants-in-the-Market (TIM) Index was 99 in November, a one-point gain month-over-month and 14 points above the U.S. average of 85. Manhattan's TIM Index ranks third among U.S. cities. It has shown a steady pace of improvement since August.

Manhattan's Leasing Activity Index registered 102 points, increasing 11 points in November to a pandemic-era high. Manhattan's Leasing Activity index was two points above the pre-pandemic level and two points above the U.S. average. Manhattan had the fourth-highest ranking among the 12 markets in the study.

Manhattan's Sublease Availability Index fell once again, to 186, three points lower than the October figure and the sixth consecutive monthly reduction. While available sublease space was 86% above the pre-pandemic level, the improvement was the result of solid subleasing activity and above-average withdrawals outpacing sublease space additions.

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