“I’m not sure that at the end of the day, it’s going to play out very well,” Cooper said. “I went through the go-go ’80s of the leveraged buyouts and saw what happened to companies who leveraged too heavily, too quickly. Suddenly the economy takes a turn. It can (result in) significant downsizing and cost-cutting because there are redundancies. There are unwanted overlaps in the market, and there can be instances when someone overpays.”

Rounding out the top 10 were Newmark Grubb Knight Frank (No. 4), which saw the value of the sales and leases it brokered jump to $5.4 billion locally from $3.8 billion last year. Ranked fifth last year, it moved ahead of Savills-Studley (No. 5), formed in last year’s $260 million acquisition of New York-headquartered Studley by London’s Savills. It was one of two top 10 firms to see deal volume slip, posting $4.5 billion last year compared with $4.7 billion the year before.

Jones Lang LaSalle (No. 6), Travers Cresa (No. 7), Colliers International (No. 8), Marcus & Millichap (No. 9) and Lee & Associates Commercial Real Estate Services (10) rounded out the 10 largest firms.

Marcus & Millichap, which only brokers sales transactions, was the other firm to see volume decrease, posting $2.1 billion worth of deals last year, down from $2.7 billion the year before.

The jump in overall deal values reflects rising rental rates and per-foot sales prices. Demand for space on the Westside has pushed tenants and shoppers east and south – a trend landlords have taken advantage of by raising rates.


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