More positive news that signals increasing construction activity. The Architectural Billings Index continues to signal increasing economic activity over the next 6-9 months.
Billings: At 53.8, up from July’s national billings score of 52.7, this was the fourth straight month over 50. Twelve of the past 13 months, and seven of the eight months of 2013, have now been over 50.
Project Inquiries: At 63.0, down from July’s 66.4, this is the third straight month that inquiries have been above 60. Six of the eight months of 2013 have now come in above 60.
The Architecture Billings Index (ABI), produced by the AIA Economics & Market Research Group, is a leading economic indicator that provides an approximately nine to twelve month glimpse into the future of nonresidential construction spending activity. The diffusion indexes contained in the full report are derived from a monthly “Work-on-the-Boards” survey that is 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 as compared to the prior month, and the results are then compiled into the ABI. These monthly results are also seasonally adjusted to allow for comparison to prior months. The monthly ABI index scores are centered around 50, with scores above 50 indicating an aggregate increase in billings, and scores below 50 indicating a decline. The regional and sector data are formulated using a three-month moving average. More information on the ABI and the analysis of its relationship to construction activity can be found in the White Paper Architecture Billings as a Leading Indicator of Construction: Analysis of the Relationship Between a Billings Index and Construction Spending on the AIA web site.