New Business Volume in Equipment Finance Rose 2% Y/Y in January

According to the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association’s Monthly Leasing and Finance Index (MLFI-25), overall new business volume for January was $8.3 billion, up 2% year over year from new business volume in January 2021. However, volume fell 30% month over month from $11.8 billion in December following the typical end-of-quarter, end-of-year spike in new business activity.

In January, receivables more than 30 days were 1.8%, down from 2% in December and down from 2.2% in the same period in 2021. Charge-offs were 0.17%, down from 0.25% in December and down from 0.47% in the year-earlier period.

Credit approvals totaled 78.4%, down from 78.6% in December. Total headcount for equipment finance companies was down 11% year over year, a decrease due to significant downsizing at a MLFI reporting company, according to the ELFA.

Separately, the Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation’s Monthly Confidence Index (MCI-EFI) in February is 61.8, a decrease from 63.9 in January.

“Despite persistent supply chain disruptions in several collateral categories and nagging inflation, the equipment finance industry picks up in January where it left off last year: New business volume is robust and portfolios continue to perform,” Ralph Petta, president and CEO of the ELFA, said. “The impact of impending higher interest rates on industry performance in the coming weeks and months bears watching, however.”

“As we end February and look forward, we have conflicting pressures on the market,” Eric Gross, chief operating officer of Dext Capital, said. “The pandemic subsiding and the prospect of a return to some sense of normalcy, as well as a robust backlog, raises optimism. These positives are countered with the ongoing supply chain disruptions, inflation, a rising interest rate environment and international tensions. With that said, overall, we think the headwinds are manageable and are bullish on market growth through 2022.”

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