AIA Reports Slow Billings Growth in September

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported modest growth for architecture firm billings in September. While growth was strong throughout 2022, firms reported being less optimistic for 2023.

Overall, business conditions remain strong across the country. The West recorded a score of 51.6; the Midwest scored 52.1; the South scored 51.7 and the Northeast scored 54.6. An index score above 50 indicates an increase in firm billings from the previous month.

The regional and sector categories are calculated as a three-month moving average, whereas the national index, design contracts and inquiries are monthly numbers.

Dodge Momentum Index Falls Just Short of All-Time High in September

The Dodge Construction Network reports that the Dodge Momentum Index (DMI) increased 5.7% in September to 183.2 from August’s score of 173.4. September’s score falls just 5% below the all-time high.

The Momentum Index measures monthly nonresidential building projects in planning. The DMI is shown to lead construction spending for nonresidential buildings by a full year.

The DMI reports that the commercial component of the Momentum Index rose 2.9%, bolstered by an array of data center projects entering the planning queue. The institutional component increased by 11.7% thanks to a rise in research and development laboratory projects in the education sector. Compared to September 2021, the DMI was 26% higher, the commercial component was up 25% and institutional planning was 28% higher.

Total Construction Starts Decrease Further in September

Total construction starts decreased in September, reports the Dodge Construction Network. Total construction starts in September fell 19% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1.02 trillion.

Through the first nine months of 2022, nonresidential building starts were 37% higher than the first nine months of 2021. Commercial starts grew 19%, and institutional starts rose 19%. Manufacturing starts were 240% higher on a year-to-date basis.

Nonresidential building starts were 37% higher throughout 2022 than the first nine months of 2021. Commercial starts grew 19%, and institutional starts rose 19%. Manufacturing starts were 240% higher on a year-to-date basis.

Residential building starts fell 11% in September to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $369.5 billion. Single-family starts lost 7%, while multifamily starts dropped 16%.

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