Equipment Leasing and Finance Index improves in May

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Elfa Index

The Equipment Leasing and Finance Association on Tuesday, June 26, said its Monthly Leasing and Finance Index, which reports economic activity for the $628 billion equipment finance sector, showed overall new business volume for May was $6.2 billion, up 10.7 percent from volume of $5.6 billion in the same period in 2011. Volume was up 1.6 percent from the previous month. Year-to-date cumulative new business volume is up 16 percent.

Receivables over 30 days were unchanged from April at 2.7 percent and declined when compared to the same period in 2011. Charge-offs decreased for the second consecutive month to 0.5 percent, down from 0.6 percent the previous month, and down by 37.5 percent compared to the same period last year.

Credit approvals increased to 78 percent in May from 76 percent in April. Seventy-five percent of participating organizations reported submitting more transactions for approval during May, down slightly from 76 percent in April.

Finally, total headcount for equipment finance companies decreased slightly from the previous month and was down 2.8 percent year over year. Supplemental data show that construction continued to lead the underperforming sectors, followed by small and medium-sized enterprises.

“Overall new business activity in the equipment finance sector continues to trend positively, despite developing headwinds resulting from the Euro-crisis and its potentially negative implications for the U.S. economy,” said William Sutton, ELFA president and chief executive officer. “Credit quality continues to show steady improvement in relation to both delinquencies and write-downs. We are hopeful that, as we move into the second half of 2012, business activity in the equipment finance marketplace continues to show steady growth amid an uncertain and restrained economic recovery.”