AWI e-briefs - 08/19/2010 (Plain Text Version)

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Industry News

Negative Conditions Persist in Architecture Billings Index

There’s good news coming from the American Institute of Architects. The Commercial construction category is a healthy sector – but the only one, according to the Architecture Billings Index (ABI) released on July 21st.

There was a negligible increase in the Architecture Billings Index last month. AIA reported the June ABI rating was 46.0, up slightly from a reading of 45.8 the previous month. This score reflects a continued decline in demand for design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry index increased from 55.5 to 57.7.

"The steep decline in nonresidential property values has slowed investment in new facilities," said AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker, PhD, Hon. AIA. "Conditions at architecture firms continue to remain very soft, but we’re optimistic that they will improve before the end of the year."

Key June ABI highlights:

  • Regional averages: northeast (47.7), south (46.7), midwest (46.3), west (43.6); 
  • Sector index breakdown: commercial / industrial (50.6), multi-family residential (46.5), institutional (45.0), mixed practice (44.7); 
  • Project inquiries index: 57.7.

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. 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.  [Return to top]