The Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA) reports that U.S. companies borrowed 8% less to finance equipment investments in October compared to a year ago, with some businesses feeling the impact of high interest rates. Despite sound metrics in the U.S. economy, participants reported slight increases in both losses and delinquencies, according to ELFA CEO Ralph Petta. He attributed this softness in credit quality to challenges experienced by businesses operating in a higher interest rate environment, constrained by reports of a pull-back in bank lending and supply chain disruptions.
Dennis Bolton, Head of North America Equipment Finance at Gordon Brothers, said that the trends were consistent with the economic environment and market turmoil resulting from quantitative tightening, inflation, employment, and supply chain disruption. In October, U.S. companies signed up for $10.4 billion worth of new loans, leases and lines of credit, up from $9.7 billion a month ago. Credit approvals also improved month-on-month, touching 76% in October, up from 73.6% in September.
The ELFA’s non-profit affiliate, the Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation, said its confidence index stood at 42.8 in November an increase from 40.1 in October . A reading above 50 indicates a positive business outlook