Washington, D.C. – The American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) Interior Design Billings Index (IDBI) shows increased revenue growth for the first quarter of 2014. As a leading economic indicator of residential and nonresidential improvement spending, the IDBI brings additional perspective to the already established construction indices. Since 2010, the IDBI has informed the economic outlook for the interior design industry as a whole.
“With this first quarter release, ASID Research relaunches its enhanced monthly benchmark for tracking residential and nonresidential improvement spending, with an emphasis on interior design,” said Randy Fiser, executive vice president and CEO of ASID. “We are pleased that ASID Research will augment vital industry data authorities such as the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Architecture Billings Index (ABI) and the National Association of Home Builders Housing Market Index (HMI). ASID Research, with its monthly reporting of the IDBI, will continue to be an important resource for any party interested in the design and construction sectors.”
The ASID IDBI reflects a lead time of approximately three to four months between interior design billings and spending. During March 2014, home improvement spending was estimated at a rate of $145 billion. In addition, the ASID IDBI index correlates with nonresidential spending. For the period March 2013 through March 2014, the ASID IDBI has been above the norm of 50 for 12 consecutive months, indicating growth across the interior design industry. In addition, the ASID IDBI reveals strong inquiry scores, indicating that firms are being contacted more frequently regarding potential projects. Larger interior design firms have seen the greatest increase in billings for the quarter.
For the month of March 2014, the ASID IDBI stood at 52.7 and the New Projects Inquiries Index at 63.5, establishing a new benchmark.
Residential and Nonresidential Sectors Report Steady Increases
The single-family sector continues to report steady increases, maintaining an index of well above 50, month over month for the past 12 months. The multifamily billings index has been more variable, ranging from 40 to 60, with a reported March index of below 50.
The nonresidential sector, including retail, office, hospitality, education, healthcare and government segments, all experienced a positive first quarter, reporting increased billings for all three months. Of particular note, the education segment broke free of a 13-month losing streak, reporting increased billings for each month of the quarter. Despite a drop in Q1, the entertainment segment has demonstrated steady growth over the period March 2013 through March 2014.
Regionally, both the ASID IDBI and the AIA ABI revealed identical trends. Firms in the South and West reported increased billings, while the other two regions experienced a decline. AIA firms, classified by region, fall between a billing index of 40 and 60. IDBI firms fall between 40 and 70.
IDBI Tracks with Conference Board Expectations Index
The Conference Board Expectations Index of consumer confidence suggests an economic outlook similar to that of the ASID IDBI. For example, in September 2013, the IDBI six-month outlook score was 70.9. At the close of the first quarter, that same score was 76.1. Likewise, the Conference Board Expectations Index stood at 76.5 in September 2013 and rose to 83.5 at the end of Q1 2014.
“Despite an overall weak economy during the first quarter of 2014, the IDBI suggests a positive outlook for the interior design industry, said Jack Kleinhenz, Ph.D., who partnered with ASID Research Director Andy Whittaker on the index. “I remain optimistic about the balance of the year. Income, employment and consumer confidence continue to improve, suggesting sustained growth in all sectors.”
About the ASID Interior Design Billings Index
The IDBI was produced by ASID Research, under the leadership of Director Andy Whittaker, in partnership with Jack Kleinhenz, Ph.D., and Russ Smith, Ph.D., both of Kleinhenz & Associates. The index, which was begun in November 2010, is a diffusion index compiled from a monthly ASID survey of 300 geographically diverse firms that primarily offer interior design services or offer interior design services as part of architectural, engineering and other related practices. Resulting perspectives on current and future business conditions for the interior design industry are helpful indicators of changes in the direction of economic activity. The ASID indices are centered on 50 percent (above 50 indicates expansion and below 50 contraction).
About ASID Research
ASID Research provides the design industry with regular data, studies and reports offering insight and analysis on the state of the industry and practice. Established to educate the design industry on the status of its health and the impact of design on the way we work, live and play, ASID Research offers quantitative and qualitative knowledge of the industry. Our goal is to provide observations, vision and compilations that inspire and inform. Outcomes include the monthly ASID Interior Design Billings Index (IDBI), soon-to-be-released ASID Industry Outlook report, third-party collaborations and educational grants.
About the American Society of Interior Designers
The American Society of Interior Designers believes that design transforms lives. ASID serves the full range of the interior design profession and practice through the Society’s programs, networks and advocacy. We thrive on the strength of cross-functional and interdisciplinary relationships among designers of all specialties, including workplace, healthcare, retail and hospitality, education, institutional and residential. We lead interior designers in shared conversations around topics that matter: from evidenced-based and human-centric design to social responsibility, well-being and sustainability. We showcase the impact of design on the human experience and the value interior designers provide.
ASID was founded nearly 40 years ago when two organizations became one — an anniversary we will recognize in 2015 — but its legacy dates back to the early 1930s. As we celebrate nearly 85 years of industry leadership, we are poised to lead the future of interior design, continuing to integrate the advantages of local connections with national reach, of small firms with big and of the places we live with the places we work, play and heal. Learn more at asid.org.
Source: American Society of Interior Designers
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