Ken Griffin single-handedly boosted Manhattan’s real estate with $238M condo purchase

Manhattan property owners owe billionaire Ken Griffin a big thank-you for giving their properties a boost despite the borough’s longest losing streak for sales in over 30 years.

According to a new report from Douglas Elliman and Miller Samuel, Griffin’s over-the-top, history-making purchase of a Manhattan condo for $238 million in January, which has been officially dubbed the most expensive home ever sold in the U.S., single-handedly boosted average property sales by nearly 10 percent.

Data from the real estate group found that the average sales price rose by $112,188 after Griffin’s purchase made national headlines. Without the deal, the average sales price would have been around $2,006,952, but prices saw a boost to $2,118,780 during the first quarter from a year earlier. It also skewed the average price per square foot higher as well.

The news of the boost comes as a surprise amid the borough’s worst first-quarter real estate report since the financial crisis.

According to report, total sales fell 3 percent in the first quarter, which marked the sixth-straight quarter of declines, capping the longest losing streak for sales in more than 30 years.

Mitch Roschelle, a partner at PwC, told FOX Business the drop stems from the lack of foreign buyers and the strong dollar coupled with slower economies.

“The housing market in New York City has always enjoyed a component of foreign buyers. In the past 18 months we’ve seen less traction from offshore buyers,” Roschelle said, adding that a new federal tax law is also causing some headaches.

“The $10,000 limit on the state and local taxes has lessened demand for home purchases. Many would-be buyers are opting to rent," he added.

Jonathan Miller, CEO of Miller Samuel, who conducted the report, said the pain is being felt at all levels, too. While the entry-level market in the city, which is below $1 million, had been holding up for the most part over the last year and a half, it is now starting to suffer, too.


“It’s like a layer cake,” Miller, the CEO of Miller Samuel, told CNBC. “When you have softening at the top, it starts to melt into the next layer and the next layer after that because those buyers further down have to compete on price.”