The Dodge Momentum Index increased in November, climbing to 125.0 (2000=100) for the month, up 0.6 percent from October's reading of 124.3 according to Dodge Data & Analytics. The Momentum Index 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. After retreating from July through September, the Momentum Index has now registered gains for two consecutive months, indicating that the nonresidential building market continues to trend upward even with the occasional setback. The Momentum Index is now 14 percent above the same month a year ago, and is at its highest level since early 2009.
The November rise in the Momentum Index was the result of greater planning activity in the commercial sector, which rose 4 percent for the month. The increase for the overall Index was held back, however, by a 3.8 percent drop in planning activity for the institutional sector. There were three commercial building projects exceeding $100 million that entered into planning during the month: the $232 million Bridgestone America Office Tower in Nashville, Tenn., a $200 million mixed-use development in Eatonville, Fla. and the $100 million Turning Stone Retail & Entertainment Venue in Verona N.Y.