LONDON-The global volume of commercial property sold in 2009 fell 30% to $381 billion, with nearly 11,000 properties selling in deals valued above $10 million, down 40%, according to the international research firm Real Capital Analytics.

China was the only country to post a significant gain, up 139% to $156 billion, some 41% of global volume. Without it, volume would have fallen 52%.

“While the annual comparisons reflect broad declines since 2007, quarterly data show a marketplace that appears to be making a remarkable recovery,” RCA says. Volumes surged in Q4 to $147 billion, the first rise in seven quarters. “So far, investment activity is rebounding in a clear V shape but risks remain, and some fear the V could easily become a W. Nevertheless, sentiment among investors is much improved and 2010 is starting with a broad but cautious sense of optimism.”

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