April showers bring May flowers. The AIA’s latest numbers for May’s Architecture Billings Index have fortunately showed renewed strength with a score of 52.9, an increase from April’s low score of 48.6, which marked a surprising setback into negative territory for the first time in nine months. (Any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings.)
“This rebound is a good sign for the design and construction industry and hopefully means that April’s negative dip was a blip rather than a sign of challenging times to come,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, in a statement. “But there is a resounding sense of uncertainty in the marketplace—from clients to investors and an overall lack of confidence in the general economy—that is continuing to act as a governor on the business development engine for architecture firms.”
BILLINGS BY REGION: NORTHEAST (ORANGE), MIDWEST (BLUE), SOUTH (RED), WEST (GREEN).
This month all regions remained in positive territory save for the Midwest which dropped to 47.5. The South managed to keep it’s head above water with a score of 50.9, the West followed with a 52.1, and the Northeast took the lead with the strongest score of 53.7.
Three of the four sectors, Multi-family residential (52.8), Institutional (52.2), and Mixed Practice (51.0), pulled into positive territory while Commercial/Industrial unfortunately tumbled even further with a 47.5.
The inquiry index, for possible new projects, has also increased from a 58.5 in the previous month to a 59.1.BILLINGS BY SECTOR: RESIDENTIAL (ORANGE), COMMERCIAL/INDUSTRIAL (BLUE), INSTITUTIONAL (RED), MIXED-USE (GREEN).