The Architecture Billings Index (ABI) in January increased 2.6 points from December 2020 to 44.9, according to The American Institute of Architects (AIA) Economics & Market Research Group. A score below 50 indicates a decline in billings. Design contracts rose 1.8 points from December to 48.8, while inquiries rose to the highest level since the pandemic began.
December billings remained negative in all regions, with the Midwest and West seeing even softer business conditions. Firms of all specializations saw billing declines, including multi-family residential which has recorded three straight months of decreases due to lack of demand. See AIA