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Architecture Billings Index News and Historical Graphs

The latest information from the American Institute of Architects on the Architecture Billings Index, plus a look at historical data.

The latest press release from the American Institute of Architects:

Washington, D.C. – March 23, 2011 – During the first two months of 2011 the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) is not exhibiting the strength of business conditions that were seen in the final quarter of 2010. As a leading economic indicator of construction activity, the ABI reflects the approximate nine to twelve month lag time between architecture billings and construction spending. The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported the February ABI score was 50.6, up slightly from from a reading of 50.0 the previous month. This score reflects a modest increase in demand for design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry index was 56.4, compared to a mark of 56.5 in January.

“Overall demand for design services seems to be treading water over the last two months,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, PhD, Hon. AIA. “We’ve been preaching patience and cautious optimism for a full recovery because there continues to be a wide range of business conditions for architecture firms that are also influenced by firm size, practice specialties and regional location. We still expect the road to recovery to move at a slow, but steady pace.”

Key February ABI highlights:
- Regional averages: Midwest (55.3), South (50.1), West (49.1), Northeast (46.4)
- Sector index breakdown: commercial/industrial (55.0), mixed practice (51.3), multifamily residential (49.7), institutional (48.9)
- Project inquiries index: 56.4

About the AIA Architecture Billings Index: The Architecture Billings Index is derived from a monthly “Work-on-the-Boards” survey and produced by the AIA Economics & Market Research Group. Based on a comparison of data compiled since the survey’s inception in 1995 with figures from the Department of Commerce on Construction Put in Place, the findings amount to a leading economic indicator that provides an approximately nine to twelve month glimpse into the future of nonresidential construction activity. The diffusion indexes contained in the full report are derived from a monthly survey sent to a panel of AIA member-owned firms. Participants are asked whether their billings increased, decreased, or stayed the same in the month that just ended. According to the proportion of respondents choosing each option, a score is generated, which represents an index value for each month. The regional and sector data is formulated using a three-month moving average.


ABI GRAPHS

The Architecture Billings Index and Project Inquiries Index over the past four years. (Data for all graphs provided by the AIA.)


The Architecture Billings Index and Project Inquiries Index over the past six months.

 


The Architecture Billings Index, broken down by region, over the past six months.

 


The Architecture Billings Index, broken down by practice sector, over the past six months.

 

 


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