Shopping centre investment fell to its lowest level since 2012 during the first half of this year

Helen Cahill
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Sellers have been shunning the market (Source: Getty)

Investment into UK shopping centres fell sharply year-on-year in the first half as uncertainty surrounding the EU referendum troubled the retail sector.

Investment transaction volumes in the sector was £1.42bn in the first half - down 27 per cent year-on-year, according to Cushman & Wakefield.

The figure represents the lowest investment volume in shopping centres since 2012, as many sellers avoided entering to market due to the EU referendum.

Cushman & Wakefield said investment volumes are likely to stay low after the Brexit vote as businesses readjust to the new political and economic environment.

The firm predicted more councils would be purchasing shopping centres in the second half of this year as they seek to control the redevelopment of town centres.

Just over half of the transaction volume (51 per cent) was accounted for by the sales of Grand Central Birmingham and intu Merry Hill.

Barry O'Donnell, head of shopping centre investment at Cushman & Wakefield, said: "Investor sentiment has certainly been impacted by the EU referendum.

"Even with Grand Central and intu Merry Hill bolstering the first half figures, volumes are low. The market is now the most interesting it has been for a while with a divergence of options which will create opportunities."

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