RCA Insights

Australia’s Deal Volume Sinks to 8-Year Low; Office, Retail Drop

By on February 19th, 2021

Commercial real estate transaction activity in Australia tumbled by almost a half in 2020 to the lowest level in eight years as the pandemic threw up hurdles to dealmaking and cast a shadow on demand for retail and office properties, the inaugural Australia Capital Trends report from Real Capital Analytics shows.

Coming off a record 2019, investment into income-producing property in Australia fell 44%. There was no traditional end-of-year bounce: in the fourth quarter activity dropped 54% compared with a year prior. Among the core property types, annual activity fell the most in the office sector, down 59%, and retail sector, down 56%.

There were some bright spots in an otherwise torrid year. Investment in industrial properties inched up due to increased interest in data center and logistics facilities, mirroring a trend seen across major Asia Pacific markets. A few alternative sectors, notably student housing and medical offices, surged ahead. Additionally, some cross-border investors kept up their interest in Australia.

Australian CRE deal volume by sector year-over-year


The debut edition of Australia Capital Trends is now available to RCA clients on the RCA website. Read this quarterly report for deal trends analysis, capital flows intelligence and expert insight into Australia’s commercial property market. If you’re interested in this report and not yet an RCA client, contact us.



Also on RCA Insights:

German Investor Groups Keep Faith in Australian Property
Record Year for Logistics Investment in Asia Pacific
Alternative Sectors Overtake Office Deal Volume in Australia

Benjamin Chow

Head of Analytics, Asia

Benjamin Chow is the Head of Analytics for Asia, based in RCA’s Singapore office and a lead author on Asia Pacific Capital Trends. His expertise spans both the commercial and residential real estate markets in Asia Pacific.