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Companies expand, U.S. office vacancy hits lowest level for two years

July 08, 2011 12:36PM

Office building vacancy in U.S. central business districts decreased to the lowest level in two years as companies expanded, according to a report by Cushman & Wakefield, reported by Bloomberg News.

“It’s a reflection of the pent-up demand in the market,” Maria Sicola, head of Americas research at Cushman, told Bloomberg News. “Economic growth has been slow, but we are growing.”

The average vacancy rate in the second quarter was 13.9 percent, Cushman said, down from 14.6 percent in the first quarter and 14.8 percent for the same period a year ago. The rate last was lower in mid-2009, when it was 13.7 percent, the New York-based brokerage said.

U.S. companies hired twice as many employees as was predicted, according to data from ADP Employer Services. Since January, leases for 41.8 million square feet have been signed, making it the most robust half in 13 years. [Bloomberg]