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