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ORANGE COUNTY, CA-Orange County’s office fundamentals strengthened significantly during first-quarter 2013, according to a report by Cushman & Wakefield Research. The county’s overall vacancy decreased 2.4 percentage points to 15.57%, second among major Southern California markets only to San Diego, with a 14.2% vacancy rate.

Office leasing activity in the county surpassed first-quarter 2012 volume by 6.2% to 1.9 million square feet leased, and occupancy gains totaled 518,722 square feet, a marked improvement over the -143,768 square feet of overall absorption from first-quarter 2012. However, rental rates continued to decline for the sector, except in the Irvine Spectrum, where direct class-A asking rent increased 6.7% to $2.31 per square foot per month, according to the report.

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