Dodge Momentum Index Inches Higher in March

Dodge Data & Analytics
April 15, 2019
COMMERCIAL, RETAIL, FABRICATION

The Dodge Momentum Index increased 0.5 percent in March to 145.5 (2000=100) from the revised February reading of 144.8. The Momentum Index, issued by Dodge Data & Analytics, is a monthly measure of the first, or initial, report for nonresidential building projects in planning, which have been shown to lead construction spending for nonresidential buildings by a full year. The March uptick was due to a 2.8 percent increase in the commercial component of the Momentum Index, while the institutional component fell 3.0 percent.

The overall Momentum Index has essentially moved sideways and stayed within a very narrow band of activity since the fall of last year. This is highly indicative of where building markets currently are at this late stage of the construction cycle, say Dodge Data analysts. While economic growth is expected to ease from 2018’s strong pace, they say, relatively healthy real estate markets fundamentals and continued support for public projects such as a schools and transportation terminals should enable planning activity to remain close to recent levels for the near term.