The purpose of this paper is to examine the structure and dynamics of Singapore's Central Area office market. A long-run equilibrium relationship is tested and a short-run adjustment error correction model are estimated, incorporating appropriate serial error correction. The long-run equation is estimated for office rent, with office employment and available stock.
With the vector error correction model (VECM), the lagged rent, available stock, office employment, vacancy and occupied stock (OS) can impact the rental adjustment process. Equilibrium rent on the whole reacts positively to lagged rents, available stock, office employment, OS and negatively to vacancy rates (VC). Past levels of positive change in VC and rental growth can have negative effects on current OS.
While good economic conditions signaled by increases in rents increase the supply of new stock (available space), higher rents and VC dampen the long-term occupied space (space absorption) in accordance with economic theory. Available stock can be forecasted by past rent and absorption levels owing to the developer's profit-driven nature.
An understanding of the interaction between the macroeconomic variables and the Central Area office market is useful to domestic and foreign investors and developers, who then can better evaluate their decision making in commercial real estate investment and development projects.
It is implicit that the Singapore Central Area office market requires at least a year before any rental increase can potentially dampen the space demanded. Firms are attracted to locate there owing to agglomeration economies and they are willing to pay premium office rents in conjunction with office space intensification in the Central Area. Newly built space is positively affected by past rents. Urban Redevelopment Authority and private real estate developers should be wary of excess office sector vacancies by avoiding over supply, even though an increase in the supply of office space in the Central Area can have a positive impact on office rent in the longer term. Most of the office space development would tend to meet the demand in the long run. Rental stickiness is exemplified as rental changes are affected by lagged rent.
Policy makers are better enabled to stabilize the office sectors of the real estate market if so required.
The paper adopts the VECM and validated by empirical evidence, to investigate the long-run equilibrium relationship and short-term corrections underlying the dynamics of the Singapore Central office market. Delay in the restoration of equilibrium in real estate markets is attributed to factors like lease terms and supply lags.
The authors would like to acknowledge the kindly assistance of Ms XU, Pei Ju for her initial analysis in this paper's study.
Hin David Ho, K., Rengarajan, S. and Glascock, J. (2014), "An examination of the structure and dynamics of Singapore's maturing Central Area office market", Journal of Property Investment & Finance, Vol. 32 No. 5, pp. 485-504. https://doi.org/10.1108/JPIF-02-2014-0013Download as .RIS
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