The boom in the logistics property market appears to be over. The Wall Street Journal reports that leased industrial space across the U.S. tumbled 28.2% from the third quarter to the fourth quarter, as a drop in demand measured by Cushman & Wakefield accelerated during the second half of 2022.

Vacancy rates remain low, averaging 3.3% during the last three months of the year. But that was an increase from the end of the summer, and companies that have been building at a frenetic pace now face a potential glut in the market. 

The pull-back comes as retailers rein back their inventory replenishment efforts in an increasingly uncertain economy, prompting a fall-off in the online sales surge that helped fuel new warehouse demand during the pandemic. Receding demand could bring down prices, but that will take time in a business built on long-term leasing contracts.