Economic Update - 10.15.21
Economic Update - 10.15.21

Featured topics:

  • Office Demand
  • Consumer Spending: Residential Districts vs. CBD
  • HUD Rule on Tenants Facing Eviction
  • Construction Spending
  • Goldman Cuts U.S. Growth Forecast
  • Mortgage Applications
  • Zombie Properties
  • Trepp Delinquency Data
  • Employment Situation
  • Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary


Demand for office space rose in August, following a sluggish July where the delta variant reduced the speed of growth across key economic indicators, according to the latest report from VTS. The VTS office demand index (VODI) rose by 3.65% month-over-month to 87 in August, the highest level since the pandemic began. To date, the VODI remains -13% below its pre-pandemic benchmark.

On a year-over-year basis, office demand has risen by 235%, easing earlier concerns that the pandemic’s crushing of the office sector in 2020 would become a longer-term, secular shift. While lingering public health concerns and a new remote-work economy still present downside risks to the sector, demand has now climbed in eight of the past nine months and has recovered 84.4% of its post-COVID drop.

Employment within “office-using” sectors rebounded in July (the latest month of data availability), charting an annualized growth rate of 4.3%, a stark contrast from the 0.8% growth rate observed in June. Using data from July’s jobs report by the BLS, the report notes that the largest increase in office-using jobs came from growth in information services employment, which saw an 11.8% annualized increase in July.


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