Asia prime office rents down q/q on global uncertainties; up y/y: Knight Frank

25, May. 2019

SINGAPORE, NNA - Overall prime office rents in the Asia-Pacific region posted a small drop in the first quarter of 2019 from the previous three months amid uncertainties over the global economy, while maintaining growth momentum on a year-on-year basis, according to real estate consulting firm Knight Frank.

Key points:

―― A survey released recently showed that Knight Frank’s Asia-Pacific Prime Office rental index fell 0.4 percent to 142.6 in January-March from the previous quarter, amid uncertainties generated by Brexit and the U.S.-China trade dispute.

―― In Q1, rents in Tokyo, Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Kuala Lumpur fell from the previous quarter, weighing on the overall trend.

―― Of the 20 cities surveyed, 15 recorded either stable or increased rents in Q1 from the previous quarter, down from 17 in Q4 of 2018.

―― From a year earlier, however, the index rose 6.2 percent, with Tokyo, Melbourne, Bengaluru, Bangkok and Singapore posting double-digit percentage growth.

Takeaway:

Nicholas Holt, Asia-Pacific head of research at Knight Frank, said in a research note that it was “an expected muted start to 2019 as the persistent headwinds from 2018 continue to weigh on market sentiment.” Knight Frank expects the rental index to rise between zero to 3 percent this year, down from 2018’s 7.7 percent climb.