The Equipment Leasing and Finance Association's (ELFA) Monthly Leasing and Finance Index (MLFI-25), which reports economic activity from 25 companies representing a cross section of the $1 trillion equipment finance sector, showed their overall new business volume for July was $7.9 billion, up 13 percent year-over-year from new business volume in July 2016. Volume was down 19 percent month-to-month from $9.8 billion in June. Year to date, cumulative new business volume was up 6 percent compared to 2016.
Receivables over 30 days were 1.40 percent, up from 1.30 percent the previous month and up from 1.30 percent in the same period in 2016. Charge-offs were 0.35 percent, down from 0.38 percent the previous month, and down from 0.38 percent in the year-earlier period.
Credit approvals totaled 76 percent in July, relatively unchanged from 75.9 percent in June. Total headcount for equipment finance companies was up 15.3 percent year over year, largely attributable to continued acquisition activity at an MLFI reporting company.
Separately, the Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation's Monthly Confidence Index (MCI-EFI) for August is 64.4, up from 63.5 the previous two months.
ELFA President and CEO Ralph Petta said, "The second half of the year gets off to a strong start, with double digit, year-over-year growth. Business fundamentals appear solid, with low unemployment, continued low interest rates and an active equities market buoying the economy. With a number of difficult public policy decisions on the horizon, all eyes will be on Washington in the coming months to glean whether this benign economic condition continues."
Michael Sweeney, Senior Vice President, Vendor Equipment Finance Originations, EverBank Commercial Finance, Inc., said, "It is promising to see such a great start to Q3 for our industry. While we all know that a great month doesn't make a quarter, it is particularly gratifying to see that new business volume for our industry is up by 6 percent over 2016 through the first seven months. Portfolio performance continues to be a source of comfort despite a recent uptick in delinquencies, as indicated by a slight decrease in charge-offs as contrasted with the prior year and month. Stable credit approval rates and our continued strong confidence index indicate what we all know at EverBank: that it is a great time to be in the equipment finance business."
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