Buenos Aires Skyline

New rankings from Mercer & Jones Lang LaSalle shed light on office space & expat affordability.

Commercial office space in Buenos Aires now ranks among the world’s Top 20 most expensive markets, according to a new study from Jones Lang LaSalle.

The analysis, prepared for Brazilian business publication Valor, compared office rents in 98 of the world’s largest metros in the U.S., Europe, Asia and South America. The #20 ranking places Buenos Aires ahead of cities like Bombay (#21), Toronto (#24), and Mexico City (#25), yet well behind the two most expensive markets in Latin America, Rio de Janeiro (#6) and Sao Paulo (#9).

The ranking made headlines in Brazil yesterday considering both cidades were in the Top 10, fueled in part by a roaring economy and record-setting acquisitions in both cities like SP’s Icon Faria Lima (US$351 million) and Rio’s Ventura Towers (US$398 million).

The analysis says average rents in both Brazilian cities are now more expensive than Manhattan, with an average range between $55-65 per square meter and some marquee buildings fetching closer to $85 per square meter. The Brazilian frenzy makes BA rents look affordable by comparison, and La Nacion reminds readers of a new Mercer global study which ranks BA #161 among 214 cities in terms of an affordability index for expats which factors in housing, transportation, clothing, food, and entertainment. (Note: the lower the number, the more affordable the city). Conversely, Brazil’s dynamic duo lie at the opposite end of the spectrum with Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo checking in at #29 and #21, respectively. (Full story in Portuguese)

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