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Falling import volumes could place a damper on industrial-rental growth

For now, the current cooling in the growth of retail sales volumes and contracting import volumes do not bode well for the demand for warehouse space to rent, and consequently market rentals.

In April 2016, real retail sales showed yearly growth of only 1%, after recording year-on-year growth of 3% and 4% in March and February 2016 respectively. At the same time, in the first quarter of 2016, import volumes were down by 4%. Note that one has to consider the possible adverse effect that the earlier-than-normal Easter Holidays had on retail sales during April. Yet, given the low levels of consumer confidence and the possibility of more monetary policy tightening, robust growth in retail sales volumes should not be expected.

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