WASHINGTON, DC -- For the 18th consecutive month, architecture firms reported increasing demand for design services in July, according to a new report today from The American Institute of Architects (AIA). The AIA Architecture Billings Index (ABI) score for July was 51.0. While this score is down from June’s score of 53.2, it still indicates stable business conditions for architecture firms (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings from the prior month). Also in July, both the new project inquiries and design contracts indexes moderated from June, but remained strong with scores of 56.1 and 52.9, respectively.
“Despite architecture services employment recently surpassing pre-pandemic levels, the ABI score this month reflects the slowest growth since January, and marks the fourth straight month with a lower score than the previous month, indicating a slowing trajectory in billings activity,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “With a variety of economic storm clouds continuing to gather, we are likely looking at a period of slower growth going forward.”
Key ABI highlights for July include:
- Regional averages: South (53.6); Midwest (52.2); West (51.7); Northeast (48.4)
- Sector index breakdown: multi-family residential (52.8); commercial/industrial (52.2); mixed practice (52.1); institutional (49.6)
The regional and sector categories are calculated as a three-month moving average, whereas the national index, design contracts and inquiries are monthly numbers.