A leading indicator of U.S. nonresidential construction activity rose slightly in February from a record low the previous month, an architects' trade group said on Wednesday.

All four geographic regions tracked by the group remained below 50, as did all four construction subsectors. However, a measure of inquiries for new projects rose 6 points to 49.5.

The improvement in the inquiries index does provide hope that some stalled projects will resurface in the near future, AIA chief economist Kermit Baker said in a statement.

The AIA's monthly survey, which began in 1995, is considered a measure of activity nine to 12 months in the future.

Nonresidential construction includes commercial and industrial facilities like hotels and office buildings, as well as institutions like schools and hospitals.

Companies that sell to this market include diversified manufacturer Honeywell International Inc , lighting maker Acuity Brands Inc and electrical components maker Thomas & Betts Corp , as well as heating and cooling systems makers Ingersoll-Rand Co Ltd and Johnson Controls Inc ..

Caterpillar Inc , Deere & Co , Terex Corp , Illinois Tool Works Inc and Eaton Corp are also exposed to the sector.

(Reporting by Nick Zieminski; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)