RCA Insights

Liquidity Drops in 111 Commercial Property Markets Globally

By on September 3rd, 2020

Market liquidity fell in 111 of 155 global commercial real estate markets in the second quarter of 2020, according to the midyear update of the RCA Capital Liquidity Scores. The count of markets posting lower quarter-on-quarter levels of liquidity is the worst since the Global Financial Crisis.

chart showing change in CRE market liquidity over time

The liquidity crunch was most pronounced in the Americas, where the greatest proportion of markets posted a drop in liquidity. Here, 58 of 64 markets registered a lower liquidity score from the first to the second quarters of 2020, amid coronavirus lockdowns and economic interruption. In Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), liquidity scores in 37 of 63 markets declined and in Asia Pacific, 16 of 28 markets dropped.

Manhattan slipped down the ranks of the world’s most liquid markets. It registered at the number three position, marking the first time since 2011 that the market has dropped out of the top two spots. Central Paris and Berlin were the world’s most liquid commercial property markets at midyear.

Additional data analysis by Shane Omundsen.


The RCA Capital Liquidity Scores are calculated using a combination of absolute and relative measures. The absolute measures are transaction volume and count of unique buyers. The relative measures are shares of: global cross-border investment; zone market maker investment; global market maker investment; and, institutional investment.

To learn more about this data and how it can help inform your investment decisions, contact us. Clients can access the latest RCA Capital Liquidity Scores report via the RCA client website.

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Tom Leahy

Tom Leahy

Senior Director, EMEA Analytics

Tom Leahy joined RCA in 2014. In his role as Senior Director for the EMEA region, Tom is responsible for the development and expansion of the market analytics service for RCA’s European clients.

Prior to joining RCA, Tom was an Associate Director and then Head of Research at UK-based property consultancy, Lambert Smith Hampton. He started his career as an analyst at research consultancy Property Market Analysis (PMA).