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FT. LAUDERDALE,FL-Industrial tenants in Palm Beach County struggled to stay in business, while landlords tried to maintain occupancy levels in first quarter 2010, according to CB Richard Ellis’ MarketView report. The vacancy rate went up 1% to 11.5% in first quarter 2010 and asking rental rates declined by 11.4% compared to the same quarter in 2009. There were 468,866 square feet of sublease space compared to 431,641 square feet in first quarter 2009.Plus, there was negative absorption of 52,650 square feet in the county as a whole. Boca Raton led the pack with negative absorption of 79,694 square feet in first quarter 2010.

The poor showing in the industrial market can be traced to high unemployment. In first quarter 2010, the unemployment rate was 12.4% in Palm Beach County, the highest in South Florida. The unemployment rate for the state was 12.2%, higher than the national average of 10.4%. A lot of this can be attributed to layoffs in the construction industry. There were 22,400 construction jobs lost in South Florida from January 2009 to January 2010, according to the Associated General Contractors Association.

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