Fortunately, in the State of New Jersey, our economy appears tobe stronger than in other parts of the country. The GoldsteinGroup, which monitors retail vacancies throughout New Jersey twicea year, currently shows a retail vacancy in New Jersey ofapproximately 5%. This figure is low compared to other retailmarkets in the United States, such as Atlanta, Miami, Chicago andDallas, who are experiencing a much higher vacancy rate, in the10-15% range. Fortunately for New Jersey, this lower vacancy ratehas meant that our economy is holding up better than those beingexperienced nationally.

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Although it is obvious that we will be experiencing some roughertimes ahead, we don't anticipate a huge increase in retailvacancies, and we anticipate that New Jersey will bounce backquickly when the economy regains its strength.

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Chuck Lanyard is president of the Goldstein Group. Hecan be reached at [email protected].

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