In a Dead Market, Bank of N.Y. Sells Defaulted Office Building

Bank of New York Co. last week sold a 320,000-square-foot midtown Manhattan office building for $22 million, about half the face value of the mortgage that went into default last year.

"We are just delighted to get this transaction done" despite the low price, said Robert J. Mueller, executive vice president.

By closing the sale at the same time as acquiring the property, Mr. Mueller said, the bank sidestepped a second round of property-transfer taxes as well as the costs of owning and managing the building. He expressed the hope that the sale means commercial property is starting to move in New York.

The bidding, won by a group headed Stephen Green, who heads a firm that owns and manages many Manhattan office buildings, was "spirited," Mr. Mueller said.

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