Commercial Real Estate & Business News – February 8, 2016

Higher rents are leading more people into the housing market, according to a Redfin survey reported by the company’s data analyst Taylor Marr. In November, 21% of respondents cited high rent as their top reason for house hunting, which is up from 13% in July… Read more »
Total U.S. employment rose by 151,000 from December to 143 million in January, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. The year-over-year gain shows nearly 5 million new jobs were created in the last year. The vast majority of new jobs are in the service sector, up 4 million workers since January 2015. The largest gains were in retail trade, professional and technical services, health care, and construction. Almost two-thirds percent of the new jobs created since last January were divided between these sectors. Read more »
The city of Mesa wants to bring a new apartment development to its downtown area. The city has issued a request for proposals for a new multifamily development at First Avenue and MacDonald Street. Bids are due Feb. 18. The property up for development is owned by the city. Metro light rail riders board trains at new stations on the expanded line along Main Street in Mesa. The property was previously slated to house a Barry Goldwater library archive. That project never got off the ground in Mesa and now the city is looking at the site for a new multifamily development with some ground-floor retail or restaurants… Read more »
Farmers Insurance, one of the largest multiline insurer groups in the country, plans to significantly expand its operations in Phoenix which could eventually raise its employee base from approximately 500 full-time employees to more than 1,500 employees… Read more »
Arizona gained traction with exports finishing 2015 with $22.6 billion in products shipped outside the state according to the latest data from U.S., the government’s export data tracking site. That’s the highest year on record, and a 6.4 percent increase from 2014, more than twice the state’s over increase in gross domestic product… Read more »