NEW YORK CITY-On a grid registering from zero to $20 billion, the first and second quarters of 2007 nearly climb off the chart in one direction, while the four quarters of 2009 nearly go off it in the other. That sums up Eastern Consolidated’s report on Manhattan commercial property sales market for the year, which the investment services firm says was the worst in more than 10 years.

The year “ended only slightly better than it started,” writes Barbara Byrne Denham, chief economist for Eastern Consolidated, in the report. Preliminary estimates for ’09 show a total for the year of $5.5 billion, dropping nearly 77% from the $23.6 billion total for 2008 and nearly 92% from 2007′s tally of $62.8 billion. By comparison, Manhattan commercial sales volume averaged $10 billion annually in 2001 and 2002.

Multifamily property sales in Manhattan reached $392 million in the fourth quarter, Eastern Consolidated says. That’s down from $410 million in the Q3 but well ahead of the Q1 and Q2 volumes of $195 million and $310 million, respectively. For non-multifamily commercial sales, Q4 volume was $740 million, off from Q3′s tally of $1.1 billion but better than Q2′s $650 million.

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