The Dodge Momentum Index retreated 4.6% in July to 138.9 (the year 2000 = 100), down from the revised June reading of 145.6. The momentum index, issued by Dodge Data & Analytics, is a monthly measure of the first (or initial) report for nonresidential building projects in planning. The lower reading for the index in July was due to a 10.2% pullback by its institutional segment following a 6% increase in June. The commercial segment in July was basically flat, slipping a slight 0.3%.

After peaking in July 2018, the momentum index has generally receded, with the latest month’s drop consistent with that trend. Compared to a year ago, the momentum index in July 2019 was down 11.6%, with its commercial segment down a steep 17.4% and its institutional segment down a relatively modest 1.8%. Much of the decline for the index over the past year took place during the latter half of 2018, as December was reported 10.6% below the July 2018 peak. Since then, the descent for the index has been more gradual, with the July 2019 reading down just 1.2% from last December.

In July, there were 13 projects each with a value of $100 million or more that entered planning, including nine commercial projects and four institutional projects.