Do improving credit conditions foretell sunny skies for small businesses?

Latest Main Street Report findings offer cautious optimism as small-business bankruptcy rates and delinquencies decline

Costa Mesa, Calif., Aug. 25, 2016 — Experian®, the leading global information services company, and Moody’s Analytics, a leading independent provider of economic forecasting, today announced that current credit conditions for small businesses are improving across most of the United States. According to the latest Experian/Moody’s Analytics Main Street Report, overall small-business delinquencies decreased slightly from last quarter, with levels dropping at every stage of delinquency. The total bankruptcy rate fell as well, though at a slower pace than the previous year.

To download a copy of the Q2 2016 report, visit http://www.experian.com/business-information.

“Small-business owners have done a great job of managing their financial commitments and paying their bills on time over the past few quarters,” said Gavin Harding, senior business consultant for Experian. “This has led to an increased level of available capital, which could enable them to expand or invest in their business to grow their enterprise. It will be very interesting, however, to watch the current trends unfold throughout the rest of the year, as administration and potential policy changes — as well as the impact of Brexit and other global events — could affect U.S. business behavior.”

While current conditions ensure that small businesses have an abundance of available credit, the average utilization rate was down almost 22 percent from the same period in 2015. The report found that this decline is the result of a slight increase in credit limits and a steady increase in balances.

“Small businesses are doing well, and their near-term prospects are good,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist for Moody’s Analytics. “Delinquencies and bankruptcies are steadily declining, reflecting solid sales, low interest rates and generally light debt loads. The only blemish is for businesses in the still-struggling energy and related industries.”

Other highlights from the Q2 2016 report:

  • The mining industry experienced the sharpest increase in severe delinquencies and bankruptcies across all industries in the second quarter
  • The transportation and utility industries also experienced a decline, with the average severe delinquency rate increasing by 30 basis points during the quarter
  • Construction saw the strongest improvement, with severe delinquencies dropping by nearly one-third in the last year and a half
  • Construction bankruptcy remains high in West Virginia and New Mexico, however, with rates of 0.59 percent and 0.44 percent, respectively
  • Bankruptcy rates along the Eastern Seaboard tend to be below the national average

In-depth insight and commentary from the Experian/Moody’s Analytics Main Street Report will be presented in a webinar on Sept. 13 at 10 a.m. Pacific/1 p.m. Eastern. If you would like to register for the event or for more information, visit http://www.experian.com/business-information.

Contacts:
Roslyn Whitehurst
Experian Public Relations
1 714 830 5578
Roslyn.Whitehurst@experian.com
Twitter: @RozWhitehurst

Katerina Soumilova
Moody’s Analytics Communications
1 212 553 1177
katerina.soumilova@moodys.com

About the Experian/Moody’s Analytics Main Street Report
Developed by Experian and Moody’s Analytics, the new Experian/Moody’s Analytics Main Street Report brings deep insight into the overall financial well-being of the small-business landscape, as well as providing commentary about what certain trends mean for credit grantors and the small-business community as a whole. Key factors comprised by the Main Street Report include a combination of business credit data (credit balances, delinquency rates, utilization rates, etc.) and macroeconomic information (employment rates, income, retail sales, investments, etc.).

About Moody’s Analytics
Moody’s Analytics helps capital markets and risk-management professionals worldwide respond to an evolving marketplace with confidence. The company offers unique tools and best practices for measuring and managing risk through expertise and experience in credit analysis, economic research and financial risk management. By providing leading-edge software, advisory services, and research, including the proprietary analysis of Moody’s Investors Service, Moody’s Analytics integrates and customizes its offerings to address specific business challenges. Moody’s Analytics is a subsidiary of Moody’s Corporation (NYSE: MCO), which reported revenue of $3.5 billion in 2015, employs approximately 10,800 people worldwide and maintains a presence in 36 countries. Further information is available at http://www.moodysanalytics.com/.

About Experian’s Business Information Services
Experian’s Business Information Services is a leader in providing data and predictive insights to organizations, helping them mitigate risk and improve profitability. The company’s business database provides comprehensive, third-party-verified information on virtually all U.S. companies, with the industry’s most extensive data on the broad spectrum of small and midsize businesses.

By leveraging state-of-the-art technology and superior data-compilation techniques, Experian provides market-leading tools that proactively support the entire credit life cycle, enabling our clients to find new customers, process new applications, manage customer relationships and collect on delinquent accounts.

About Experian
We are the leading global information services company, providing data and analytical tools to our clients around the world. We help businesses to manage credit risk, prevent fraud, target marketing offers and automate decision making. We also help people to check their credit report and credit score and protect against identity theft. In 2015, we were named one of the “World’s Most Innovative Companies” by Forbes magazine.

We employ approximately 17,000 people in 37 countries and our corporate headquarters are in Dublin, Ireland, with operational headquarters in Nottingham, UK; California, US; and São Paulo, Brazil.

Experian plc is listed on the London Stock Exchange (EXPN) and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 index. Total revenue for the year ended March 31, 2016, was US$4.6 billion.

To find out more about our company, please visit http://www.experianplc.com or watch our documentary, “Inside Experian.”

Experian and the Experian marks used herein are trademarks or registered trademarks of Experian Information Solutions, Inc. Other product and company names mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners.