The Architecture Billings Index (ABI) has increased for three consecutive months due to increasing demand for design activity. The April ABI score was 50.6, down from the mark of 51.9 in the previous month according to the AIA, but any score above 50 represents an increase in billings.
With an increase in billings should come an increase in construction as well, as the ABI reflects an approximate nine to twelve month lead time between architecture billings and construction spending. All regions showed an increase in billings--South (52.2), Northeast (51.5), West (50.8), Midwest (50.8).
“Architects continue to report a wide range of business conditions, with unusually high variation in design activity across the major building categories,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “The strong growth in design contracts – the strongest score for this indicator since last summer -- certainly suggests that firms will be reporting growth in billings over the next several months.”