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September 28, 2023 Equipment Finance Industry Confidence Steady

Confidence in the equipment finance market in September is 50.3, steady with the August index of 50.4.

Washington, DC – The Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation (the Foundation) releases the September 2023 Monthly Confidence Index for the Equipment Finance Industry (MCI-EFI) today. The index reports a qualitative assessment of both the prevailing business conditions and expectations for the future as reported by key executives from the $1 trillion equipment finance sector. Overall, confidence in the equipment finance market is 50.3, steady with the August index of 50.4.

When asked about the outlook for the future, MCI-EFI survey respondent Jonathan Albin, Chief Operating Officer, Nexseer Capital, said, “Overall there appears to be good momentum around capital investment, whether driven by infrastructure initiatives, emerging technologies, or onshoring. Barring the emergence of a severe economic threat, I believe this momentum will continue.”

equipment fianance mci sept 2023

September 2023 Survey Results:

The overall MCI-EFI is 50.3, steady with the August index of 50.4.

When asked to assess their business conditions over the next four months, 10.3% of the executives responding said they believe business conditions will improve over the next four months, an increase from 3.6% in August. 75.9% believe business conditions will remain the same over the next four months, down from 89.3% the previous month. 13.8% believe business conditions will worsen, an increase from 7.1% in August.

10.3% of the survey respondents believe demand for leases and loans to fund capital expenditures (capex) will increase over the next four months, relatively unchanged from 10.7% in August. 79.3% believe demand will “remain the same” during the same four-month time period, an increase from 78.6% the previous month. 10.3% believe demand will decline, also relatively unchanged from 10.7% in August.

13.8% of the respondents expect more access to capital to fund equipment acquisitions over the next four months, up from 7.1% in August. 72.4% of executives indicate they expect the “same” access to capital to fund business, down from 78.6% last month. 13.8% expect “less” access to capital, down from 14.3% the previous month.

When asked, 20.7% of the executives report they expect to hire more employees over the next four months, a decrease from 22.2% in August. 72.4% expect no change in headcount over the next four months, up from 70.4% last month. 6.9% expect to hire fewer employees, down from 7.4% in August.

None of the leadership evaluate the current U.S. economy as “excellent,” down from 3.6% the previous month. 89.7% of the leadership evaluate the current U.S. economy as “fair,” up from 85.7% in August. 10.3% evaluate it as “poor,” relatively unchanged from 10.7% last month.

6.9% of the survey respondents believe that U.S. economic conditions will get “better” over the next six months, a decrease from 10.7% in August. 62.1% indicate they believe the U.S. economy will “stay the same” over the next six months, an increase from 60.7% last month. 31% believe economic conditions in the U.S. will worsen over the next six months, an increase from 28.6% the previous month.

In September, 24.1% of respondents indicate they believe their company will increase spending on business development activities during the next six months, down from 25% the previous month. 69% believe there will be “no change” in business development spending, up from 67.9% in August. 6.9% believe there will be a decrease in spending, relatively unchanged from 7.1% last month.

September 2023 MCI-EFI Survey Comment from Industry Executive Leadership:

Bank, Small Ticket
“Interest rates have hopefully stabilized. Demand should increase to account for year-end spending.” Charles Jones, Senior Vice President, 1st Equipment Finance (FNCB Bank)

Independent, Small Ticket
“Inflation and the economy will improve when we return to energy independence.” James D. Jenks, CEO, Global Finance and Leasing Services, LLC

ABOUT THE MCI

Why an MCI-EFI?

Confidence in the U.S. economy and the capital markets is a critical driver to the equipment finance industry. Throughout history, when confidence increases, consumers and businesses are more apt to acquire more consumer goods, equipment, and durables, and invest at prevailing prices. When confidence decreases, spending and risk-taking tend to fall. Investors are said to be confident when the news about the future is good and stock prices are rising.

Who participates in the MCI-EFI?

The respondents are comprised of a wide cross-section of industry executives, including large-ticket, middle-market and small-ticket banks, independents, and captive equipment finance companies. The MCI-EFI uses the same pool of 50 organization leaders to respond monthly to ensure the survey’s integrity. Since the same organizations provide the data from month to month, the results constitute a consistent barometer of the industry’s confidence.

How is the MCI-EFI designed?

The survey consists of seven questions and an area for comments, asking the respondents’ opinions about the following:

Current business conditions

  1. Expected product demand over the next four months
  2. Access to capital over the next four months
  3. Future employment conditions
  4. Evaluation of the current U.S. economy
  5. U.S. economic conditions over the next six months
  6. Business development spending expectations
  7. Open-ended question for comment

How may I access the MCI-EFI?

Survey results are posted on the Foundation website, https://www.leasefoundation.org/industry-resources/monthly-confidence-index/, included in the Foundation Forecast eNewsletter, and included in press releases. Survey respondent demographics and additional information about the MCI are also available at the link above.

JOIN THE CONVERSATION
Twitter: https://twitter.com/LeaseFoundation
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/10989281/
Vimeo: https://vimeo.com/elffchannel

ABOUT THE FOUNDATION
The Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation is a 501c3 non-profit organization that propels the equipment finance sector—and its people—forward through industry-specific knowledge, intelligence, and programs that contribute to industry innovation, individual careers, and the overall betterment of the equipment leasing and finance industry. The Foundation is funded through charitable individual and corporate donations. Learn more at www.leasefoundation.org.

Media Contact: Charlie Visconage, cvisconage@leasefoundation.org

 

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