With the last three years’ job growth numbers resembling a sideways line more than a incline, office real estate market indicators have been held to similarly less-than-spectacular showings. With an average job growth of 190,000/month through April ’13, office vacancies and rents can only trail and never overtake the leading indicator. On the new product side, construction and new completions are also at low levels, says REIS VP of Research & Economics Victor Calanog. How low? Most remarkable: REIS’s numbers showed onlu 1.7 million square feet of new office space coming online in 1Q 2013, the lowest level of new completions REIS has published on a quarterly basis since they began publishing quarterly numbers in 1999.
Economist Spotted In The Wild
In a move that some* might say subtly reflects the persistent malaise in the office space market, Dr. Calanog’s video was apparently not shot in the office interior setting customary to videos looking at market data. Instead, a lively park bustles behind the economist, bringing to mind how the internet and wireless access has become nearly universal, freeing consumers of office space from their cubes in previously unheard-of numbers. While it’s easy to make too much of the trend, outdoor sightings of economists among the squirrels leads one to imagine that, speaking broadly, space demand must be held down to at least some degree by the evolving workplace expectations of “digital-native” millennial generation workers.
*Okay, nobody says this but me. “Some” actually means “I”. Also, judging by the audio, he almost certainly wasn’t actually outdoors and used a chroma-key instead.