Above are the world’s 10 most expensive office markets by occupancy costs (rent, taxes, insurance, etc.), according to the latest Manhattan Market Overview by Cushman & Wakefield. The list was compiled pre-financial crisis, so a couple of open-ended questions:
1. Will Manhattan, with Midtown already having fallen from No. 9 in 2007 to No. 10 in 2008, even be on the list in 2009, if its office vacancy rates continue to rise and its rents to drop?
2. Will London stay on top? As reported by various media, the British capital suffers from an impending glut of office space due to a faltering economy and layoffs (sound familiar?).
And, finally, look down the list from London, to Nos. 2, 3 and 4–Hong Kong, Tokyo and Mumbai, all non-Western office markets that have exploded out of the gate in the last decade or so as the Western ones sowed the very seeds of their current troubles.