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Trends Up, Down, and All Around

The latest Architectural Billings Index results were released this past week and they came in pretty much like I expected. Still not great, and not what we had been used to, but they were better than what they were and what they could be.

Here’s the skinny. The main index stayed exactly the same as last month: 40. (I had predicted a slight drop to 38.) That is “good” in the big picture of things. The inquiries into new projects were virtually flat too from last month 49.3 to 49.1. The problem point was in the new contracts signed department where the drop from 44 to 41.7 was a rough pill to swallow. Remember, 50 is break even, so we are not there yet and in one of the categories backsliding some. I had a feeling it would be off a bit this month given the way the markets were reacting, so none of this was a surprise.

Now, we just keep working away and continue to be smart and focused in our efforts. With the calendar now turning to fall, which traditionally showed boosted forecasts that could be a plus coming our way, but it is the year 2020 so nothing normal or planned can be counted on! Next ABI comes out Sept. 23.


  • Thoughts and prayers to all my friends on the Gulf coast with a double billing of hurricanes coming your way. What an unreal time and approach. Hope these things peter out before they get to you and stay well and safe!
  • There are some folks who have disagreed with me on my assertions that the office setting is going to come back in a solid form, and I believe glass will play a massive role. Well at least for the offices coming back; I have a great ally in Amazon. This news on Amazon expanding office space is excellent. Thank you to all of my friends out there who shared this with me too! Please to all if you see a good story that could affect our industry, shoot it to me….
  • I caught the first episode of the new podcast from John Wheaton, “Creating Structure.”  A few weeks ago, I noted he was launching a pod and the first effort was excellent. Great guest in Dan Adams, CEO of Advanced Industrial Marketing, and the subject matter that included deep dives into strategy, training, communication, and 30-years-worth of Harvard Business Reviews was great. Congrats John, and look forward to more of this content in the future!
  • Glass Magazine review time: Trendwatch was the cover story, and a good portion of the issue was dedicated to what’s hot and next. That alone is a must read for anyone in our world. I also enjoyed the “Ramping Back Up” article from Larry Johnson of Quanex and my guy Tim Finley had his excellent blog post published in this issue: that made my day. Great piece if you haven’t read it yet. Once again, front to back a fabulous issue from the best in the industry.
  • Ad of the month: a tough choice again especially since this issue is popular with advertisers because of the “trend” content and leading into GlassBuild season. Marketers brought their best! But only one winner this time, and I am going with Kuraray and their “When Seconds Count…” piece. The design almost had a 3D flavor to it and image absolutely caught my eye. Sharp and impressive ad for sure. Kudos to the team there on this month’s best!
  • I missed this little blurb when first posted on, and it was a job where an old car dealership was redone as luxury apartments. Nice work! I think we are going to see a lot more work like this in the future, and we need to as well. Way too many old structures sitting empty out there…
  • Last this week… did you think you’d get through an entire blog without me reminding you to register for GlassBuild Connect? Event kicks off Sept. 1, and runs all of September and is the only industry event you need to attend that month. Next week, I’ll dive deeper into the schedule but I will say it now, the amount of excellent content that the NGA team has put together and the efforts from the over 300 exhibitors will really blow you away. Register now:

Read on for links of the week...


Max Perilstein

Max Perilstein

Max Perilstein is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. Contact him at