European Leasing Professionals Predict a Good Start to 2015

According to the Leaseurope/Invigors European Business Confidence Survey, December 2014 findings indicate that the outlook for new business volumes over the first half of 2015 remains positive, with 84% of those surveyed expecting new business volumes to increase, while just 7% anticipate a decline.

Expectations on the level of bad debt are stable at similar levels to the previous survey with the majority of participants (62%) forecasting that bad debt will remain unchanged over the coming 6 months. Similarly, 52% expect no change in margins, although 31% predict that margins will decrease in their organizations, slightly above the percentage recorded in the previous survey.

However, the results for net profits show a marginal improvement, with 63% of survey respondents forecasting that net profits for their business will increase over the next six months, a small increase on that recorded last June.

Industry expectations on a number of key indicators covering service levels, expenditure and staffing show either small improvements or little change for the first half of 2015, while exactly half of respondents said that their organizations are targeting expansion. Growth was focused in particular on areas such as vendor finance as well as on asset classes such as vehicles and technology. There was also interest in geographic expansion, primarily in Europe as well as in new product areas such as invoice discounting and wholesale finance.

Commenting on these results, Invigors EMEA partner Richard Ryan added, “Despite some uncertainty, the outlook for the European economy remains generally positive and this is reflected in the findings of the latest survey. After a strong performance in 2014, business sentiment suggests that the industry is set for a good start to 2015. Over 60% of respondents in the December survey are more optimistic about the prospects for their business in the first half of this year. A further 27% felt that these were unchanged, while only 12% thought that their business prospects would worsen.”

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