Huh? Manhattan rents are ... declining?

The unthinkable is happening in Manhattan.

Rental rates are steadily declining. While The New York Times reports that the market typically “swoons” somewhat during the winter, this year the drop in demand has been sharper and has lasted longer. One brokerage owner went so far as to proclaim that the market recently “has died.”

What could have caused this anomaly?

One theory is that the slump could be correcting for the fact that rental rates have increased substantially more than incomes over the last few years. But the trend still puzzles some analysts since it’s occurring even as the number of new apartment buildings has dwindled and the borough’s population has grown.

Source: The New York Times