RTTNews - Investment in commercial properties in London rose in the second quarter of this year from the first quarter, a report from the property broker Cushman & Wakefield showed Wednesday.

In the second quarter, GBP 1.43 billion was invested for commercial properties in central London's main West End and City and Docklands markets, up 110% on first quarter's GBP 679 million. That was the first increase since the second quarter of 2007.

The central London property investment market is likely to be among the first to recover in Europe and the increase in activity is further evidence that overseas investors see value with yields at an historic high, the report said.

Regionally, the biggest increase in activity was seen in the West End market with GBP 733 million invested, an increase of over 250% on first quarter figure of GBP 207 million. However, it is still below GBP 928 million recorded in the second quarter of the previous year.

Overseas private buyers dominated with 38% of purchases with overseas funds accounting for a further 22%, the property broker said.

Clive Bull, head of central London investment and partner in Cushman & Wakefield's London Group said overseas investor Has been fueled by a perception that the London market represents relatively good value, the continuing weakness of the pound and the lack of competition from the traditional UK/Irish debt buyers.

The question exercising the minds of many investors, however, is whether this activity is the start of the recovery or some kind of false dawn, Bull said.

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