Data courtesy of AIA.

The recent slowdown in construction activity might be easing, stated officials from the American Institute of Architects (AIA). The organization reported in its monthly Architectural Billings Index (ABI) that while February’s reading was below the 50.0 mark (49.5), new project inquiries and signed design contracts increased considerably. The project inquiries index scored 56.0 and the design contracts index scored 51.1.

The ABI is a leading economic indicator of construction activity, providing an approximately nine- to 12-month glimpse into the future of nonresidential construction spending activity. Any score below 50.0 indicates decreasing business conditions.

“There are indicators this month that business conditions at firms may finally begin to pick up in the coming months,” said AIA’s chief economist Kermit Baker. “Inquiries into new projects grew at their fastest pace since November, and the value of newly signed design contracts increased at their fastest pace since last summer. Given the moderation of inflation for construction costs and prospects for lower interest rates in the coming months, there are positive signs for future growth.”

AIA officials said the Midwest continued to report billings growth (50.8), while construction activity throughout the rest of the U.S. remained weak. The Northeast scored 44.0, the South scored 47.7 and the West scored 47.2.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *