Architecture Billings Index (ABI)
The Architecture Billings Index is an economic indicator for nonresidential construction activity, with a lead time of approximately 9–12 months. Investment groups like Wells Fargo, media outlets, firms of all sizes, and business leaders rely on this leading monthly economic indicator to assess business conditions and predict and track the market.
The index is derived from AIA’s Work-on-the-Boards survey, which has gathered data on shifts in billings from architectural firm leaders for over 20 years. This data is a trusted tool used by the design and construction industry and other firms to predict and track movements in the market
Examples of the ABI in use:
- Firm strategic planning: ADD Inc., a multidisciplinary design firm with 200 employees, uses the ABI to help prepare for market fluctuations and ramp-up hiring.
- Determining business cycle shifts: Johnson Controls, which provides buildings services, looks to ABI for an early picture of construction trends to use in resource planning and stockholder guidance—and to identify expansion opportunities.
- Timing in a changing economy: One of the largest privately held family-owned real estate development and construction firms, Gilbane Inc., finds the ABI vital to help manage budgets, prepare for market movements, manage RFPs and seek leads.
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ABI October 2018: Business conditions improve modestly at architecture firms
Though growth is still occurring, billings at architecture firms softened again in October.
ABI September 2018: Business conditions strong heading into fall
Business conditions remained generally positive at architecture firms in September, with the Architecture Billings Index showing another month of growth in firm billings.
ABI August 2018: End of summer sees healthy billings rebound
Firm billings saw a healthy jump in August, a positive sign for economic conditions as firms enter what is traditionally a seasonal slowdown.
ABI July 2018: Billings grow at slower pace for second straight month
Architecture firms reported that firm billings continued to grow in July, but the pace of growth slowed for the second month in a row.
ABI June 2018: Billings grow at modestly slower pace
Though fewer firms reported growth than in May, architecture firm billings still increased for the ninth consecutive month.
ABI May 2018: Firm billings continue to grow
Business conditions at architecture firms remained strong in May, which marked the eighth consecutive month of billings growth.