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Dodge Momentum Index Starts 2020 on the Downside


The Dodge Momentum Index fell 2.7% in January to 152.5 (2000=100) from the revised December reading of 156.7, snapping a four-month streak of gains. 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 decline in the overall Momentum Index was the result of an 11.0% drop in the institutional component, more than offsetting a 2.7% gain in the commercial component.

A similar pattern exists when comparing year-over-year growth in the components of the Index. The institutional component was down 7.4% when compared to January 2019 while the commercial component was 17.4% higher than a year ago. These conflicting trends pushed the overall Momentum Index up 7.1% from January 2019.

In January, 10 projects each with a value of $100 million or more entered planning. The leading commercial projects were a $200 million parking garage in the Bronx, N.Y., and the $160 million first phase of the Palomino Business Park in Norco, Calif. The leading institutional projects were the $500 million Good Samaritan Hospital expansion in West Islip, N.Y., and the $250 million Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora, Colo.