Architecture Billings Index Inched Up to 52.2 in January

Washington, DC, February 20, 2020-The Architecture Billings Index (ABI) score of 52.2 for January compared to 52.1 in December reflects an increase in design services provided by U.S. architecture firms (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings), according to the American Institute of Architects’ (AIA).

Indicators of work in the pipeline, including new project inquiries and new design contracts remained positive, posting scores of 57.9 and 56.0 respectively.  

“Despite the continued presence of volatility in the economy, design activity has begun to accelerate in recent months,” said AIA chief economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “Even with the ongoing challenges facing the nonresidential construction sector, this upturn points to at least modest growth over the coming year.”  

Regional averages were as follows: South, 56.7; West, 52.1; Midwest, 51.3; and Northeast, 45.3.

The sector index breakdown was mixed practice, 51.6; commercial/industrial, 51.5; multi-family residential, 51.2; and institutional, 51.1.

The project inquiries index was 57.9, and the design contracts index was 56.0.