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Singapore's office rental market is the weakest in the world: study

It posted the biggest office rental decline at 11.4% in 3Q.

Economic uncertainty and a cautious approach from occupiers have caused year-to-date Asia Pacific office leasing volumes to decline 10% over the same period a year earlier, according to a study by JLL which also shows Singapore leading the weak trend.

Amongst the 30 world's largest business centres and real estate markets, the JLL study points to Singapore as having the largest annual decline in office rental growth at 11.4%.

Sydney, meanwhile, reported the fastest annual growth at 19.7%. It is followed by Hong Kong, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Manila and Dallas with annual growth ranging from 7.1% to 9.7%.

Moving forward, Sydney is expected to remain the top rental performer in Asia Pacific in both 2016 and 2017 on the back of ongoing robust demand levels, while Hong Kong and Beijing are predicted to join Singapore in negative rental territory next year.

"Growth in Asia Pacific rents is expected to show signs of a modest slowdown through the end of 2016 and into 2017 amid economic uncertainty and muted growth in leasing volumes," said JLL

The study finds that rents trended down in most Southeast Asian markets. Supply pressure coupled with weakness in the banking sector and the wider economy continued to put downward pressure on Singapore rents (-2.1%).

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