Property group Great Portland expects Brexit to hit London market

LONDON: Great Portland Estates, a central London property and investment company, said it expected the Brexit vote to hit economic growth and confidence in the British capital, taking a toll on commercial property markets.

The FTSE 250 group, which has a property portfolio worth 3.7 billion pounds ($4.8 billion), said it was well positioned for any slowdown, with a record low gearing enabling it to take advantage of any market weakness.

“In the near-term, we expect confidence to reduce and some business investment decisions to be deferred whilst negotiations to establish our trading arrangements with the EU are undertaken,” it said.

“As a result, we can expect London’s commercial property markets to weaken during this period of uncertainty with the benefits of lower bond yields and weaker sterling offset by reduced rental growth prospects.”

Commercial property has been one of the early victims of Britain’s vote to leave the EU, with a number of property funds being suspended after investors linked up to ask for their money back.

Reporting by Kate Holton & Editing by Costas Pitas

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