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Cyprus Internet Directory [ UK commercial property values fall 44 pct from peak ]

UK commercial property values fall 44 pct from peak

UK commercial property values fall 44 pct from peak
July 14, 2009 - By Andrew Macdonald (Reuters)

British commercial property values fell 0.9 percent in June, nearly half May's decline and taking the market's total fall to 44.1 percent since June 2007, as the UK real estate slump enters its third year.

The benchmark data from Investment Property Databank (IPD), used as the basis for the UK's property derivatives market, had registered a 1.6 percent drop for May.

Britain's debt-fuelled property boom came to an abrupt end two years ago in the wake of the U.S. subprime mortgage crisis, which exposed billions of dollars of real estate liabilities at the world's biggest banks.

The data confirmed the correction in UK real estate values was starting to slow. In the 12 months to end-June, commercial property capital values fell 30.8 percent.

"British commercial property markets have marked the second anniversary of consecutive monthly declines in capital values with the shallowest fall since August 2007," IPD said.

Capital value falls at sector level were most diluted in the retail sector, down 0.7 percent. In the industrial and office sectors, capital values fell, respectively, 0.8 percent and 1.2 percent, the data showed.

IPD director Ian Cullen said June marked the first month in 24 in which falling occupier demand, rather than investor diffidence, played the lead role in driving capital decline.

Income returns, which rise if capital values fall faster than rental income, rose again marginally to 0.69 percent.

"Over this two-year period, the nature of this property recession has shifted from a yield-driven downturn ... to a deepening negative rental cycle, particularly over the six months to the end of June 2009," Cullen said in a statement.

"Rising vacancy rates and over-renting further underpin the shift in the phase of this property recession," he said, adding that on an all property basis vacancy rates had risen from 8.2 percent to 12.1 percent over the two-year period.

Over-renting -- the proportion of income from properties paying rent above market value -- had jumped from 2.5 percent to 6.7 percent over the same period, Cullen said.

Comparing the performance of UK commercial property with other asset classes over the two years to end-June showed it had returned -36.7 percent, against the FTSE All Share's -30.8 percent and bond's 26.3 percent.

On July 7, CB Richard Ellis data showed British commercial property prices fell 0.8 percent in June, taking the market's total drop to 44 percent since its mid-2007 peak and suggesting a turning point may be near.

(Source: Financial Mirror,

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