Job losses, particularly in Ontario, are expected to result in a significant upswing in the vacancy rate for commercial real estate over the next six quarters, according to a year-end report to be released today by Cushman & Wakefield Lepage.

Overall vacancy rates increased to 5.5 per in the fourth quarter from the third. One bright spot, the report says, happens to be in the west GTA, where vacancy rates went up to 5.7 per cent from 5.5 per cent in the third quarter. Downtown vacancy rates remain the tightest at 3.8 per cent.