The American Society of Interior Designers’ (ASID) quarterly Interior Design Billings Index reports that the second quarter of 2013 remained positive in the April-June period. The Billings Index for June closed at 56.4, up nearly three points from May’s score of 53.7 and higher than April’s score of 55.5.
The AIA’s Architectural Billings Index, which rebounded May, was down slightly in June (from 52.9 to 51.6, respectively). Inquiries, however, were up three and a half points (from 59.1 to 62.6), and architectural firms were reporting a higher proportion of project backlogs.
“The economy expanded more than expected in the second quarter of 2012, and this momentum should carry forward, albeit at a soft pace, in the remainder of 2013,” says Jack Kleinhenz, chief economist for ASID. “The pace of growth is expected to lift to about 2.2 percent in the second half of 2013.”
Performance Averages Across Industry Sectors
For the first half of the year, 2013 looked very much like 2012, with perhaps some slightly more accentuated variation. Activity should stay positive in the second half, although gains likely will be modest.
Higher billings and more positive economic news helped lift designer confidence in June. The ASID Business Outlook Index rose from 67.5 in May to 71.8. Signs of job growth and rising housing prices suggest things may be moving in the right direction, if more slowly than predicted earlier in the year.
Launched in November 2010, the ASID Interior Design Billings Index tracks performance data for billings, inquiries and product sales specific to the interior design industry. The index is based on a monthly survey of 300 firms and provides a tailored perspective on billings, business conditions and economic outlook. The results are compiled into diffusion indexes centered on 50, with scores above 50 indicating an increase in billings, and scores below 50 indicating a decline.