The AIA Architectural Billing Index (ABI) for November 2014 was clocked at 50.9, down from 53.7 in october and 55.2 in September. There's been a slow backslide for the past few months, but it is still above 50. Any value greater than 50 means that architecture billings are increasing; conversely, any value less than 50 means billings are decreasing. The ABI is a leading indicator of commercial building construction by approximately nine to 12 months. Here is the geographic and sector breakdowns:
Regional (three month moving) Averages for November 2014:
The Northeast continues to be a drag and the Midwest has also slid to the contraction range. The above 50 scores for the nationwide ABI have been riding on the backs of the South and the West.
Sector Averages for November 2014:
Project inquiries were down to 58.8 (down 62.7 in October and 64.8 in September). The Design Contracts Index (which, according to AIA highlights trends in new design contracts at architectural firms) was measured in at 54.9, down from 56.4 in October and 56.8 in September.
The ABI is down overall and every sector, except for the steroid-injecting multi-family market, are down. However, every sector is above 50. The below-50 weakness is housed in the Northeast and Midwest. Hopefully the weakness remains contained there.