Dodge Momentum Index Improves 3% in December

(Illustration courtesy of Dodge Construction Network)

The Dodge Momentum Index rose 3% in December to 186.6 from November’s 181.5 reading, indicating more nonresidential buildings going into the planning stage.

The Dodge Construction Network said the index generally leads construction spending by a year.

Over the month, commercial planning grew 1.0% and institutional planning improved 6.1%, the report said.

“The Momentum Index ended the year 11% below the November 2022 peak, ultimately stabilizing as the year progressed,” said Sarah Martin, associate director of forecasting for Dodge Construction Network.

Martin noted  the index averaged 184.3 in 2023, levels not recorded since 2008. “While ongoing labor and construction cost issues will persist in 2024, a substantive amount of projects are sitting in the planning queue and will support construction spending going into 2025,” she said.

Hotel and data center planning drove growth in the commercial segment of the DMI during December, while stronger healthcare and public building planning supported more momentum on the institutional side. Year over year, the index was 2% lower than in December 2022. The commercial segment was down 9% from year-ago levels, while the institutional segment was up 14% over the same time period, Dodge reported.

The largest commercial projects that entered the planning stage in December include the $500 million Universal Theme Park Kids Resort and Hotel in Frisco, Texas and the $400 million Dog River Industrial Park in Mobile, Alabama. The largest institutional projects include two Mayo Clinic buildings, each valued at $400 million, in Rochester, Minn.