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Washington, DC – Recently, the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) released a new monthly economic update with the latest industry data and insights for the engineering and design industry.

Here are the toplines from this month’s update:

  • Total design and construction spending was up nearly 10% this May, compared to the same time last year, says the U.S. Census Bureau. The category remains driven by private residential spending (+19%), along with private non-residential which is still up, but not as much as previous months at (+3.7%). Public spending is now showing a slight decline (-2.7%) year-over-year.
  • The hottest market in the private, non-residential sector is manufacturing, which is up 23% from the previous year. On the other side, the coolest market is lodging which declined by 20%, based on data that was not seasonally adjusted from the U.S. Census Bureau.
  • The possibility of a recession is still looming and labor shortages, supply chain disruptions, and inflation remain top concerns. According to Building Design+Construction,industry leaders are worried that they may no longer be able to pass along price increases to their clients. This could result in project delays or firms taking on more financial risk to win work at lower margins.
  •  Additionally as we look across the business landscape, for the first time in three years startup funding is droppingInvestments in tech startups are at their lowest level since 2019, dropping 23% over the last three months. This is according to figures released earlier this month by PitchBook, which tracks young companies.

The economic update series is one of ACEC’s resources for media and members, which also includes ACEC’s popular Private Industry Briefs. The briefs provide analysis on five key markets: Commercial and Real Estate; Intermodal and Logistics; Energy and Utilities; Health Care and Science+Technology; and K-12 & Higher Education.

Learn more about ACEC’s full slate of private market offerings here.

The American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) is the business association of the nation’s engineering industry. Founded in 1909, ACEC is a national federation of 51 state and regional organizations representing more than 5,500 engineering firms and 600,000+ engineers, surveyors, architects, and other specialists nationwide. ACEC member firms drive the design of America’s infrastructure and the built environment.


Resource Type

Press Release

Topic Area

Economic Insight


July 20, 2022

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