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CBRE Adjusts View

At the helm is President Brett White, a former broker who runs the company from its headquarters in West Los Angeles.

"Conditions have deteriorated on a scale and with a speed that no one could have predicted just a few months ago," White said in a letter to clients this month after third- quarter profit fell 60% from the same period a year earlier.

"Market conditions of unprecedented strength are roiling the world's financial markets," White went on to say. "The global economy is either in, or close to, recession and 2009 is not likely to be a year of great recovery."

White insisted, however, that the company had quickly responded to the downturn by reducing expenses and would be positioned to grab a bigger share of the real estate market when the economy eventually improved.

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