U.S. Shopping Center Occupancy at Six-Year High


sales up graphThe death of the mall has been highly exaggerated, according to data released Monday by the International Council of Shopping Centers and the National Council of Real Estate Investment Fiduciaries. Among the highlights: Shopping center occupancy rates were 92.7% at the end of 2014, the highest level since second quarter 2008, according to data released Monday. Occupancy was even higher for the mall segment (combined super-regional and regional malls), at 94.2% at the end of 2014, the highest since the end of 1987.

Also in 2014, mall sales productivity reached an annualized $475 per square foot. The metric has been generally increasing at a healthy pace since 2009, when it was $383.

Shopping center base rents are also on the upswing, rising 6.5% year-over-year in 2014, the third consecutive annual gain and the strongest level since 2008, the data showed. For the mall segment, base rents rose 17.2% in 2014, the strongest annual gain since ICSC and NCREIF began tracking the data series in 2000. Base rents increased 15.3% in fourth quarter 2014 year-over-year, making it the fifth consecutive quarter with a double-digit gain.


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