Reason for optimism? Leasing volume picks up with flurry of large block deals at quarter end
The San Francisco office market remained on course with increasing vacancy, although at a slower rate than previous quarters. The city closed the second quarter at full employment and record office using jobs but continued to face challenges to a widespread return to office trend. Citywide net absorption totaled negative 505,000 square feet, an improvement over the negative 1.5 million square feet in the first quarter. Financial District Class A rents decreased by 3 percent, as availability increased to nearly 21 percent. The largest leases signed in the pandemic occurred in the second quarter, a potential sign of confidence in future office demand, with Wells Fargo renewing 640,000 square feet at 333 Market Street and Google subleasing 310,000 square feet at 510 Townsend Street. Any optimism must be balanced by potential headwinds in slowing VC funding, a pullback in public equity markets, rising interest rates, and periodic reports of tech layoffs, all portending to a slowdown in the economy.