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U.S. industrial market continues recovery in first quarter 2014

by Reg Clodfelter

After gaining momentum in 2013, the U.S. industrial market continued to show improved fundamentals in first quarter 2014, as 30.5 million square feet of absorption led to a year-over-year increase in occupancy gains of 31 percent, according to the latest report from Cushman & Wakefield.

“Domestic manufacturing continues to gain traction, driving increased production and shipments, and electronic fulfillment continued to expand,” said John Morris, Cushman & Wakefield's leader of Industrial Services for the Americas, in a statement. “As a result, the economic environment for our sector is the best we have seen in many years.”

There was continued downward pressure on the national vacancy rate as well, ending the quarter at 7.4 percent — 80 basis points lower than at April 1, 2013.

California markets led the way, with four of the five lowest vacancy rates by market f

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