Posts tagged with "Architecture Billings Index":

Architecture Billings Index makes it six positive scores in a row

It's six in a row for the Architecture Billings Index (ABI). This July, the reported score from the American Institute of Architects (AIA) was 51.9. Despite this being down from June's 54.2, the score means that the ABI hasn't been in the red since January. Other scores, however, were up from the previous month. The projects inquiry index increased by 0.9 from 58.6 to 59.5 and likewise, the design contracts index increased from 53.7 to 56.4. This six-month streak follows last year's trend when six positive scores came during the same months. In 2016, however, the tide turned in August when that positive stretch was broken. The swing that year resulted in a dip from 51.5 to 49.7, continuing a downward trend from the previous months, and a similar scenario is being set up here. The ABI is the leading economic indicator of construction activity. It reflects a 9 to 12 month lead time between architecture billings and construction spending. The national index, design contracts, and inquiries are calculated monthly, while the regional and sector categories are calculated as a three-month moving average. The index runs on a scale from 0-100 and scores above 50 suggest growth while anything below implies negativity in the market “The July figures show the continuation of healthy trends in the construction sector of our economy,” said AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker in a press release. “In addition to the balanced increases in design billings across all major regions and construction sectors, the strong gains in new project work coming into architecture firms points to future growth in design and construction activity over coming quarters.” Key July ABI highlights: • Regional averages: South (53.8), Midwest (53.8), Northeast (53.6), West (50.9) • Sector index breakdown: multi-family residential (55.8), commercial / industrial (55.4), institutional (52.0), mixed practice (48.4) • Project inquiries index: 59.5 • Design contracts index: 56.4

Architecture firms enjoy strong end to the year’s second quarter

Marking five consecutive months of positive scores, the Architecture Billings Index score for June prolonged the purple patch for U.S. architecture firms. If last year is anything to go by, the billings index did not drop until August. For June, a score of 54.2 was reported, a steady increase from May's 53.0. While scores overall increased, particularly on the East Coast, the projects inquiry index was 58.6, down from a reading of 62.4. Also on the decrease, though staying positive, was the design contracts index which dipped from 54.8 to 53.7. The ABI is the leading economic indicator of construction activity. It reflects a 9 to 12 month lead time between architecture billings and construction spending. The national index, design contracts, and inquiries are calculated monthly, while the regional and sector categories are calculated as a three-month moving average. The index runs on a scale from 0-100 and scores above 50 suggest growth while anything below implies negativity in the market “So far this year, new activity coming into architecture firms has generally exceeded their ability to complete ongoing projects,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD in a press release. “Now, firms seem to be ramping up enough to manage these growing workloads.” Key June ABI highlights:
  • Regional averages: South (54.8), West (53.1), Midwest (51.9), Northeast (51.5)
  • Sector index breakdown: multi-family residential (57.1), mixed practice (53.8), institutional (52.6), commercial / industrial (52.1)
  • Project inquiries index: 58.6
  • Design contracts index: 53.7

Billings Index continues its 2017 positive streak

Off the back of ending the first quarter of the year on a high, and in the wake of what is usually the year's peak construction season, the Architectural Billings Index (ABI) has remained strong. This May, a score of 53.0 marked the fourth positive month in a row as the Billings Index stays true to last year's good form. If that continues, we can expect two more months of more-or-less the same. May was also an improvement on April, which reported a score 50.9. Also on the up was the projects inquiry index which rose from 60.2 to 62.4, and the design contracts index which increased slightly from 53.2 to 54.8. The ABI is the leading economic indicator of construction activity. It reflects a 9 to 12 month lead time between architecture billings and construction spending. The national index, design contracts, and inquiries are calculated monthly, while the regional and sector categories are calculated as a three-month moving average. The index runs on a scale from 0-100 and scores above 50 suggest growth while anything below implies negativity in the market. “The fact that the data surrounding both new project inquiries and design contracts have remained positive every month this year, while reaching their highest scores for the year, is a good indication that both the architecture and construction sectors will remain healthy for the foreseeable future,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. in a press release. “This growth hasn’t been an overnight escalation, but rather a steady, stable increase.” Key May ABI highlights: •           Regional averages: South (56.1), West (52.3), Midwest (50.4), Northeast (46.5) •           Sector index breakdown: mixed practice (55.8), multi-family residential (51.3), commercial / industrial (51.2), institutional (51.2) •           Project inquiries index: 62.4 •           Design contracts index: 54.8

Billings continue to increase as construction season nears peak

Three is the magic number for the Architectural Billings Index, it seems, as April marks a hat-trick of consecutive positive scores. The three-month long positive streak will be welcome news, but not all within the industry will be surprised that April reported a positive score of 50.9 as the construction season approaches its zenith. This score, however, was down from March's 54.3. Meanwhile, Design Contracts and Inquiries were both up from the previous month, rising to 53.2 and 60.2 from 52.3 and 59.8 respectively. If last year is anything to go by, we can expect three more months of positive scores. The ABI is the leading economic indicator of construction activity. It reflects a 9 to 12 month lead time between architecture billings and construction spending. The national index, design contracts, and inquiries are calculated monthly, while the regional and sector categories are calculated as a three-month moving average. The index runs on a scale from 0-100 and scores above 50 suggest growth while anything below implies negativity in the market. “Probably even better news for the construction outlook is that new project work coming into architecture firms has seen exceptionally strong growth so far this year,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD in a press release. “In fact, new project activity has pushed up project backlogs at architecture firms to their highest level since the design market began its recovery earlier this decade.” Key April ABI highlights: • Regional averages: South (55.3), Midwest (53.3), West (50.9), Northeast (50.7) • Sector index breakdown: institutional (54.0), mixed practice (53.4), commercial / industrial (52.4), multi-family residential (49.9) • Project inquiries index: 60.2 • Design contracts index: 53.2

Billings Index continues strong form, ending first quarter on a high

The Architecture Billings Index (ABI) has continued its surge as the first quarter of the year ended and the American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported a March ABI score of 54.3, up from 50.7 the previous month. The new year ABI hangover (now seemingly customary) is now all but a distant memory as the ABI established a two-month-long positive streak. Last year, the ABI score for January was 49.6 but the following six months were all positive scores. Additionally, the new projects inquiry index was 59.8, down from a reading of 61.5 the previous month, while the new design contracts index dipped from 54.7 to 52.3. So let's not get ahead of ourselves. The ABI is the leading economic indicator of construction activity. It reflects a 9 to 12 month lead time between architecture billings and construction spending. The national index, design contracts, and inquiries are calculated monthly, while the regional and sector categories are calculated as a three-month moving average. The index runs on a scale from 0-100 and scores above 50 suggest growth while anything below implies negativity in the market. “The first quarter started out on uneasy footing, but fortunately ended on an upswing entering the traditionally busy spring season,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “All sectors showed growth except for the commercial/industrial market, which, for the first time in over a year displayed a decrease in design services.” Key March ABI highlights: • Regional averages: Midwest (54.6), South (52.6), Northeast (52.4), West (50.2) • Sector index breakdown: multi-family residential (54.6), mixed practice (53.7), institutional (52.9), commercial / industrial (49.8) • Project inquiries index: 59.8 • Design contracts index: 52.3

Architecture Billings Index witnesses resurgence after bad start to 2017

The Architecture Billings Index (ABI) is over its little January wobble. As early 2017 indicated a slow start to the year, the dip into the red proved only temporary as the American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported the February ABI score was 50.7, up from a score of 49.5 in the previous month. December, by contrast, produced a score of 55.6. The score suggests that January was merely a minor blip, following the trend of recent years where the first month of the year was the only negative among positive scores. Last year, the AIA reported positive results for the following six months after a sketchy start to 2016 and this year looks on track to emulate this. The ABI is the leading economic indicator of construction activity. It reflects a 9 to 12 month lead time between architecture billings and construction spending. The national index, design contracts, and inquiries are calculated monthly, while the regional and sector categories are calculated as a three-month moving average. The index runs on a scale from 0-100 and scores above 50 suggest growth while anything below implies negativity in the market. “The sluggish start to the year in architecture firm billings should give way to stronger design activity as the year progresses,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker in a press release. “New project inquiries have been very strong through the first two months of the year, and in February new design contracts at architecture firms posted their largest  monthly gain in over two years.” Key January ABI highlights:
  • Regional averages: Midwest (52.4), South (50.5), Northeast (50.0), West (47.5)
  • Sector index breakdown: institutional (51.8), multi-family residential (49.3), mixed practice (49.2), commercial / industrial (48.9)
  • Project inquiries index: 61.5
  • Design contracts index: 54.7

Architecture Billings Index indicates slow start to 2017

This isn't fake news, the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) has dipped, and no, Jimmy Kimmel isn't here to rectify the mistake. The bad start to the year comes off the back of what had been a positive end to 2016 for the ABI. In January, the AIA reported an ABI a score of 49.5, a contrast to December's 55.6.

Indeed, the last month of 2016's score indicated the largest increase in design services for that year, but perhaps it is an unjust comparison to make. The previous two January scores were slightly negative and came after positive December scores. Last year, the ABI score for January was 49.6 but the following six months were all positive scores. So perhaps we shouldn't be too worried, yet.

The ABI is the leading economic indicator of construction activity. It reflects a 9 to 12 month lead time between architecture billings and construction spending. The national index, design contracts, and inquiries are calculated monthly, while the regional and sector categories are calculated as a three-month moving average. The index runs on a scale from 0-100 and scores above 50 suggest growth while anything below implies negativity in the market. “This small decrease in activity, taking into consideration strong readings in project inquiries and new design contracts, isn’t exactly a cause for concern,” said AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker in a press release. “The fundamentals of a sound nonresidential design and construction market persist.” Key January ABI highlights:
  • Regional averages: South (54.2), Northeast (53.0), Midwest (52.4), West (48.8)
  • Sector index breakdown: institutional (54.6), commercial / industrial (53.4), mixed practice (48.1), multi-family residential (48.1)
  • Project inquiries index: 60.0
  • Design contracts index: 52.1

No drama as ABI ends on much-predicted positive note

When the AIA said the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) was honing in on a positive note to end the year, most people believed them. The ABI had been on an upward trend two months prior and December's continuation of this wasn't all that unthinkable.

A December score of 55.9 to cap the year off was up from November's (also positive) score of 50.6 and marked the third positive score in a row off the back off a two-month slump before hand. December's score for the ABI indicates the largest increase in design services in 2016. Though project enquiries came down from 59.5 to 57.2, design contracts rose to 51.2 from 50.2.

The ABI is the leading economic indicator of construction activity. It reflects a 9 to 12 month lead time between architecture billings and construction spending. The national index, design contracts, and inquiries are calculated monthly, while the regional and sector categories are calculated as a three-month moving average. The index runs on a scale from 0-100 and scores above 50 suggest growth while anything below implies negativity in the market.

The sharp upturn in design activity as we wind down the year is certainly encouraging. This bodes well for the design and construction sector as we enter the new year”,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD in a press release. “However, December is an atypical month for interpreting trends, so the coming months will tell us a lot more about conditions that the industry is likely to see in 2017.”  

Key December ABI highlights:

  • Regional averages: Midwest (54.4), Northeast (54.0), South (53.8), West (48.8)
  • Sector index breakdown: commercial / industrial (54.3), institutional (53.3), mixed practice (51.9), multi-family residential (50.6)
  • Project inquiries index: 57.2
  • Design contracts index: 51.2

Architecture Billings Index clings on to positive score as 2016 comes to a close

The Architecture Billings Index (ABI) is honing in on ending the year on a high note, albeit while whimpering over the line. November saw a positive score reported for the month—the second in succession after a previous two-month slump. The score indicated a subtle increase in design services. The new projects inquiry index was 59.5, up from a reading of 55.4 the previous month. The overall score for November was 50.6, marginally less than October's 50.8 The ABI, the leading economic indicator of construction activity, reflects a 9 to 12 month lead time between architecture billings and construction spending. The national index, design contracts, and inquiries are calculated monthly, while the regional and sector categories are calculated as a three-month moving average. The index runs on a scale from 0-100 and scores above 50 suggest growth while anything below implies negativity in the market. “Without many details of the policies proposed, it’s still too early to tell the likely impact of the programs of the new administration,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “However, architects will be among the first to see what new construction projects materialize and what current ones get delayed or canceled, so the coming months should tell us a lot about the future direction of the construction market.” Key November ABI highlights: Regional averages: South (51.3), Midwest (50.9), Northeast (50.8), West (48.6) Sector index breakdown: Multi-family residential (51.7); Mixed practice (51.3); Commercial / Industrial (50.4); Institutional (49.5) Project inquiries index: 59.5 Design contracts index: 50.2

Back with a bang: Architecture Billings Index rebounds after a two month dip

After a two-month slump, the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) has come back with a vengeance, storming to a score of 50.8 in October. In the months prior, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported scores of 49.7 and 48.4 (for August and September respectively). While this may be good news on a national scale, the only region to report positive figures was the South—an area which hasn't seen a dip in billings growth since June 2012. The ABI, the leading economic indicator of construction activity, reflects a 9 to 12 month lead time between architecture billings and construction spending. The national index, design contracts, and inquiries are calculated monthly, while the regional and sector categories are calculated as a three-month moving average. The index runs on a scale from 0-100 and scores above 50 suggest growth while anything below implies negativity in the market.
While numbers for inquiries remained typically strong (the last figure below a score of 50 was in July 2009 in the aftermath of the recession), design contract figures dropped into the negative after a three-month streak. Billings for "Residential" typologies were also the only sector to post positive scores for the month too. Institutional and Mixed Practice remained negative from the previous month meanwhile, Commercial/Industrial figures dropped from a score of 50.4 to 49.8.
“There was a collective sense of uncertainty throughout the design and construction industry leading up to the presidential election,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “Hopefully we’ll get a sense of what direction we will be headed once we get a clearer read on how the new administration’s policies might impact the overall economy as well as the construction industry.”
Key October ABI highlights:
  • Regional averages: South (53.7), West (49.7), Northeast (47.3) Midwest (46.8)
  • Sector index breakdown: Multi-family residential (51.2), Commercial/Industrial (49.8), Mixed Practice (49.5), Institutional (49.1)
  • Project inquiries index: 55.4
  • Design contracts index: 48.7
Due to small sample sizes, the regional and sector categories are calculated as a 3-month moving average. On the other hand, for the national index, design contracts and inquiries are monthly figures.

Architecture Billings Index: Growth slumps, but remains positive

Now on a six-month streak, the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) has stayed positive. For July, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported a score of 51.5, down from 52.6 in the previous month. While overall the score signalled good news, the Northeast and West regions dipped below 50. The South continued its strong run of form, with its index rising to 56.9. Growth in the Midwest also recovered from a score of 48.6 last month, posting 50.1 for July. The ABI, the leading economic indicator of construction activity, reflects a 9 to 12 month lead time between architecture billings and construction spending. The national index, design contracts, and inquiries are calculated monthly, while the regional and sector categories are calculated as a three-month moving average. The index runs on a scale from 0-100 and scores above 50 suggest growth while anything below implies negativity in the market. July also saw both inquiries and design contracts report positive figures: 51.8 and 57.5, respectively. Previously, design contracts had fallen to 49.7, having enjoyed comfortable growth for well over year before hand. Inquiries, on the other hand, while nearly always strong (the last figure below a score of 50 was in July 2009) fell from 58.6 to 57.5. “The uncertainty surrounding the presidential election is causing some funding decisions regarding larger construction projects to be delayed or put on hold for the time being,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “It’s likely that these concerns will persist up until the election, and therefore we would expect higher levels of volatility in the design and construction sector in the months ahead.” Key July ABI highlights:
  • Regional averages: South (56.9), Midwest (50.1), Northeast (49.3), West (49.2)
  • Sector index breakdown: multi-family residential (55.2), institutional (50.7), mixed practice (50.5), commercial / industrial (50.3)
  • Project inquiries index: 57.5
  • Design contracts index: 51.8
Due to small sample sizes, the regional and sector categories are calculated as a 3-month moving average. On the other hand, for the national index, design contracts and inquiries are monthly figures.

Architecture Billings Index presses on after strong start to the year

For the fifth month running, the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) has stayed positive. For June, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported a score of 52.6, down from last month's 53.1, though it should be noted that any score above 50 suggests an increase in billings. There was, however, "concern" over the slump in design contracts. Regionally, all areas (excepting the Midwest) continued strongly with numbers keeping on a positive trend.   “Demand for residential projects has surged this year, greatly exceeding the pace set in 2015. This suggests strong future growth for housing in the coming year,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “While we expect to see momentum continue for the overall design and construction industry in the months ahead, the fact that the value of design contracts dipped into negative territory in June for the first time in more than two years is something of a concern.” The ABI, the leading economic indicator of construction activity, reflects a 9 to 12 month lead time between architecture billings and construction spending. The national index, design contracts, and inquiries are calculated monthly, while the regional and sector categories are calculated as a three-month moving average. The index runs on a scale from 0-100 and scores above 50 suggest growth while anything below implies negativity in the market. Key June ABI highlights:
  • Regional averages: South (55.5), West (54.1), Northeast (51.8), Midwest (48.2)
  • Sector index breakdown: multi-family residential (57.9), institutional (52.7), mixed practice (51.0), commercial / industrial (50.3)
  • Project inquiries index: 58.6
  • Design contracts index: 49.7
Due to small sample sizes, the regional and sector categories are calculated as a 3-month moving average. On the other hand, for the national index, design contracts and inquiries are monthly figures.