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Facebook seeking data center site; WeWork's NYC leases lowest in over 5 years

Commercial real estate

* Facebook Inc. has been searching for land in Greater Nashville, Tenn., for a data center project, the Nashville Business Journal reported, citing unnamed sources and public records. The report noted that Facebook's typical initial investment in its data center projects in other markets has been $750 million for a 970,000-square-foot data center, and it has expanded its investment to up to $2 billion in some cases.

Sources told the publication that Facebook is targeting Gallatin, about 30 miles northeast of Nashville, for a potential project.

* WeWork Cos. Inc.'s total fourth-quarter leases in Manhattan, N.Y., totaled just 64,000 square feet, the lowest in more than five years, Bloomberg News reported. In London, WeWork's other top market, the coworking company leased just 49,000 square feet in the quarter, marking the lowest volume since the Brexit vote in the second quarter of 2016.

CoStar associate director for analytics Victor Rodriguez said WeWork's troubles have also caused a wider slowdown in the flexible office market, the news outlet noted.

* The Hauser family is placing a property up for sale in Manhattan's Soho neighborhood for more than $90 million, The Real Deal reported, citing unnamed sources. The connected buildings at 591-593 Broadway total 90,000 square feet and house a Victoria's Secret store at their base that has four years remaining on its lease.

* Fintech company Refinitiv leased 108,917 square feet at Fosun International's 28 Liberty St. property in Manhattan, Commercial Observer reported, citing broker JLL. The company is leasing the entire 37th, 38th and 56th floors at the 60-story tower.

* Airbnb Inc. leased 300,000 square feet in two buildings in Santa Clara, Calif., The Mercury News reported, citing the online rental platform and several realty experts with knowledge of the deal. The company has leased 4301 and 4401 Great America Parkway from The Sobrato Organization.

* Boyle Investment Co. Inc. is in late-stage discussions to acquire four East Memphis, Tenn., office buildings from real estate investment trust Highwoods Properties Inc., the Memphis Business Journal reported, citing unnamed sources close to the deal. The properties are International Place II at 6410 Poplar Ave. and Triad Centres I, II and III at 6000, 6060 and 6070 Poplar Ave., the report noted, citing the sources.

* The Blackstone Group Inc. affiliate Link Industrial Properties and Panattoni Development Co. Inc. purchased a property in Kent, Wash., from Boeing Co. for $60 million, the Puget Sound Business Journal reported, citing public records. Link and Panattoni are planning a two-phase, six-building business park called Pacific Gateway Industrial Park that will total nearly 808,000 square feet.

Housing

* Home sales in the New York City boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens increased for the first time since 2017, Bloomberg News reported, citing Miller Samuel Inc. and Douglas Elliman Real Estate. Brooklyn sales in the fourth quarter of 2019 rose 2.9% year over year, and Queens logged a 6.8% year-over-year increase during the quarter. The median sale price in Queens reached a record high of $610,000, marking a 7.4% year-over-year jump.

The median price in Brooklyn was $800,000, up 1.9% year over year.

The day ahead

Early morning futures indicators pointed to a higher opening for the U.S. market.

In Asia, the Hang Seng was up 0.27% to 28,638.20, and the Nikkei 225 increased 0.47% to 23,850.57.

In Europe, around midday, the FTSE 100 was up 0.02% to 7,599.56, and the Euronext 100 was up 0.05% to 1,159.24.

On the macro front

The employment situation report, the wholesale trade report and the Baker-Hughes Rig Count report are due out today.

Click here to read about today's financial markets, setting out the factors driving stocks, bonds and currencies around the world ahead of the New York open.

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