Manhattan securities firms lost a net 3,600 workers last year, trimming payrolls by about 2 percent down to 179,000, according to data from the New York State Comptroller’s office.
The city is set to lose another 4,900 of those employees this year, even though companies have bannered higher pay and better working conditions for new hires.
While New York loses Wall Street jobs, the securities industry nationally expects to add 23,000 new workers this year, The Wall Street Journal reported.
New York’s share of securities industry jobs fell to 18 percent last year, barely half of the 33 percent it held in 1990, the WSJ noted.
TRENDPOST: Especially with financial firms decamping from Manhattan to Florida adding to the work-from-home woes of New York City office landlords, (“U.S. Financiers: Bye, Bye Wall Street,” 2 Feb 2021) we see nothing alters our long-standing forecast, made shortly after the COVID War began and maintained in articles such as “New York Office Vacancies Set Record” (13 Jul 2021) and “As Forecast: NYC Real Estate Crisis Worsens” (24 Aug 2021).
As Manhattan businesses shrink their need for office space, lease prices and real estate values will continue to spiral down until they reach a level businesses and investors will accept.
The smallest commercial landlords, which have fewer reserves than the Bigs, will sell out or go bankrupt; property owners and investors with deep pockets will buy those properties and grow even bigger but still will struggle with lower revenues and smaller profits.
TREND FORECAST: We continue to see a bleak future not only for office landlords, but also for the shops, bars, restaurants, salons, and other businesses that form the economic ecosystems that depend on commuters.
As we noted in our “Real Estate Industry Update” on 13 April, 2021, moves to change zoning laws to turn empty commercial buildings into residential ones will not replenish the loss of rental income from commercial tenants and economic loss for retail, restaurant, tourism, and hospitality businesses that thriving commercial cities generated.
At the bottom of this downward spiral: city treasuries, which depend heavily on property taxes for revenue. (Property taxes account for more than 40 percent of New York City’s annual budget.) Less revenue means fewer services, leading to a reduced quality of life, persuading even more people to move away, reducing property tax revenue even more.

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