Equipment Finance Industry Confidence Rises in November

According to the Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation’s Monthly Confidence Index, confidence in the equipment finance market rose to 60.2 from the October reading of 58.7.

“The most recent positive job creation report and the resolution of the leadership struggles in the House of Representatives should equate to more optimism and less uncertainty for small business owners and decision makers,” said David T. Schaefer, CEO of Mintaka Financial. “I am more optimistic about the business environment.”

When asked to assess their business conditions over the next four months, 14.8% of executives responding said they believe business conditions will improve over the next four months, unchanged from October. Meanwhile, 11.1% believe business conditions will worsen, which is an increase from 7.4% in October. Most executives believe conditions will remain the same (74.1%).

Most respondents are also rather unmoved when it comes to the demand for leases and loans to fund capital expenditures and access to capital to fund equipment acquisitions, with 66.7% believing demand will stay the same and that access will also remain unchanged.

“Demand has stabilized and appears to be increasing as the traditional year-end push for last minute acquisitions occurs,” said Valerie Hayes Jester, president of Brandywine Capital Associates. “Pressure continues on margin and I do not see that changing in the near term. The marketplace is flooded with capital and as the industry continues to show strong portfolio performance, I do not expect the profitability dynamic to change.”

Executives also have middling thoughts about the economy, with 92.6% evaluating the current U.S. economy as “fair.” In comparison, 3.7% rated it as “excellent, the same percentage that rated it as “poor.”

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Terry Mulreany
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