Global Retail Highlights – Spring 2011
After two successive years of lackluster growth, the world’s top retail streets once again regained their vitality, as reflected by a general rise in rents in many of the world’s premier shopping districts. As the lingering effects of the global downturn faded during the latter half of 2010, rising demand for the world’s most prime retail real estate was evident in many countries as many new retailers sought to establish a foothold in the world’s most prestigious avenues. The rebound in luxury retail can be seen in the share prices of leading high-end fashion retailers, all of which are up sharply since the beginning of 2010. Burberry in particular is up 124.5%, and Bulgari, Richemont-Cartier, Tiffany, LVMH Moet Hennessey Louis Vuitton and PPR-Gucci are all up significantly over the past 17 months. This surge in share prices shows that investors have confidence that high-end consumers are back to their big-spending ways. Two features unique to high-end retail are the relative health of financial centers—which have recovered sharply since the lows of 2009—and tourism, which is benefiting such cities as London and New York.