We'll take any glimmer of hope we can get. And so, combined with yesterday's stock market rally, happy day: It seems February wasn't as damp and dreary at January for the Architecture Billings Index (ABI). The AIA reports that the ABI was up (in only ever so slightly) to 35.3 from 33.3 in January. And, while in the big picture, it still points to a general lack of demand for design services, the new project inquiry score was 49.5, which is close to 50, above which indicates an increase in billings. I'm tellin' ya, we'll take any good news that comes our way!
On the down side, regional averages are still way down, with the West at 36.4, the South at 35.5, the Midwest at 35.0 and the Northeast at 32.3 (ouch!). By sector, it's not much rosier: mixed practice was at 40.1., institutional at 36.8, multi-family residential at 33.3, and commercial/industrial at 32.