Businesses of All Sizes Showing Signs of Improvement, According to Experian's Latest Business Benchmark Report

Costa Mesa, Calif., Feb. 23, 2010 — Experian®, the leading global information services company, today announced the results of its monthly Business Benchmark Report. In January, the national average number of days that businesses paid beyond the terms of their contracted amounts was 5.77. This number has decreased by 2 percent over the last six months, indicating overall payment behavior may be showing signs of improvement. In fact, businesses of all sizes, in all industries and across all regions have shown improvement in payment behavior. Additionally, the percentage of dollars delinquent remained stable over the six-month review period; the percentage of dollars severely delinquent (91-plus days delinquent) is 5.3 percent, a 2 percent improvement from the previous period.

Other key findings from this month’s Business Benchmark Report include:

Risk score:

  • The national average commercial risk score for January was 57.14.* Compared with six months ago, this score has improved slightly (by 0.5 percent), indicating some stability in expected payment behavior over the next 12 months.
  • Businesses with more than 1,000 employees continue to show the highest rate of projected severe delinquency, with an average credit score of 33.03. However, that score has improved by 7.8 percent in the last six months.
  • Utilities companies still have the best (or highest) risk score average of all industries (68.89), and the retail and finance industries have the lowest average at 52.30 and 50.60, respectively.
  • The Northeast continues to have the lowest risk score (54.49) but saw a slight improvement compared to six months ago (0.6 percent).

*Based on a 100-point scale

Average days beyond terms (DBT):

  • The national average DBT for January was 5.77. This number has decreased by 2 percent, indicating overall payment behavior is beginning to improve. In fact, businesses of all sizes, in all industries and across all regions have shown improvement in payment behavior.
  • The communications and construction industries have shown the worst payment performance, coming in at 9.42 and 9.90 DBT, respectively.
  • The Northwest and Mountain regions show the worst payment performance, with an average of 7.52 and 8.68 DBT, respectively.

Percentage of dollars delinquent:

  • For small businesses (0 to 99 employees), the percentage of dollars delinquent and the percentage of dollars 91-plus days delinquent are improving. Additionally, the percentage of dollars 91-plus days delinquent is improving for large businesses with more than 1,000 employees.
  • The national average percentage of dollars delinquent for January was 12.5 percent (remaining stable over the last six months), and the percentage of dollars now 91-plus days delinquent is 5.3 percent (a 2 percent improvement from the previous period). This indicates a continued increase in business activity, generating improved cash flow and ability to meet obligations in a more timely fashion.
  • Construction shows signs of improvement but continues to perform poorly (with 22.79 percent of dollars delinquent).

 

January 2010

 

 

 

 

Six-month change

 

 

Risk score

Average DBT

Percent $ delinquent

Percent $ 91+

 

Risk score

Average DBT

Percent $ delinquent

Percent $ 91+

National average

57.14

5.77

12.5%

5.3%

 

0.5%

-2%

0%

-2%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Number of employees

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nonemployer

58.00

4.97

8.8%

5.0%

 

0.7%

-2.4%

-1.4%

-1.4%

1 to 4

57.06

6.37

14.1%

7.9%

 

0.3%

-2.2%

-1.3%

-1.6%

5 to 9

55.04

7.64

14.8%

7.2%

 

0.2%

-2.9%

-1.2%

-1.8%

10 to 19

54.37

7.81

15.0%

6.3%

 

0.2%

-2.1%

-1.3%

-1.3%

20 to 49

55.37

7.65

14.3%

4.7%

 

-0.1%

-1.4%

-0.4%

-0.6%

50 to 99

55.86

7.46

15.0%

3.7%

 

-0.2%

-0.9%

-0.3%

-0.1%

100 to 249

53.97

7.77

15.6%

2.9%

 

-0.2%

-0.8%

0.5%

-2.0%

250 to 499

52.73

8.37

15.6%

2.2%

 

-0.3%

-1.2%

4.7%

1.7%

500 to 999

52.42

8.37

16.7%

1.5%

 

-0.3%

-1.8%

2.2%

2.8%

1,000 and over

33.03

6.59

20.0%

2.2%

 

7.8%

-2.0%

1.5%

-0.6%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Risk score

Average DBT

Percent $ delinquent

Percent $ 91+

 

Risk score

Average DBT

Percent $ delinquent

Percent $ 91+

Industry group

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Agriculture

62.83

5.29

10.77%

6.38%

 

0.29%

-3%

-4%

-4%

Forestry

64.78

3.69

23.57%

18.02%

 

0.20%

-2%

-9%

-16%

Mining

60.43

4.87

7.82%

1.19%

 

-0.03%

-1%

10%

17%

Construction

55.46

9.90

22.79%

9.79%

 

0.30%

-2%

0%

-1%

Manufacturing

56.28

8.55

16.20%

4.49%

 

0.13%

-2%

1%

-5%

Transportation

53.17

7.78

14.93%

6.06%

 

0.44%

-2%

1%

-1%

Communications

50.27

9.42

16.47%

7.89%

 

0.48%

-4%

0%

-2%

Utilities

68.89

4.89

16.47%

5.22%

 

-0.01%

-2%

-2%

-2%

Wholesale trade

56.48

7.60

12.74%

3.36%

 

0.25%

-2%

0%

-2%

Retail trade

52.30

7.84

17.92%

5.68%

 

0.26%

-2%

-1%

-2%

Finance

50.60

7.89

12.32%

7.97%

 

0.28%

-3%

-2%

-1%

Insurance

59.25

5.75

8.29%

5.72%

 

0.27%

-4%

-2%

-3%

Real estate

56.28

6.26

5.31%

3.48%

 

0.22%

-3%

-2%

-3%

Hospitality

52.31

6.86

5.85%

1.87%

 

0.17%

-1%

6%

5%

Business services

54.62

8.55

15.38%

7.90%

 

0.35%

-3%

-2%

-4%

Health services

60.89

4.68

10.53%

3.80%

 

-0.03%

-2%

0%

-2%

Legal services

56.65

6.50

12.88%

8.59%

 

0.06%

-4%

-2%

-3%

Educational services

61.37

5.32

10.83%

5.28%

 

0.09%

-4%

-1%

-3%

Public admin.

60.85

4.89

13.74%

4.48%

 

0.43%

-3%

-2%

-5%




 

Risk score

Average DBT

Percent $ delinquent

Percent $ 91+

 

Risk score

Average DBT

Percent $ delinquent

Percent $ 91+

Region

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mid-Atlantic

59.44

5.01

13.2%

4.5%

 

0.5%

-4%

-2%

-3%

Midwest

58.61

5.94

16.7%

7.7%

 

0.5%

-2%

-1%

-2%

Mountain

57.21

8.68

8.4%

4.1%

 

0.5%

-1%

6%

5%

New England

60.08

4.53

11.4%

3.8%

 

0.5%

-4%

-2%

-4%

Northeast

54.49

4.35

14.7%

5.5%

 

0.6%

-4%

-2%

-3%

Northwest

59.08

7.52

12.9%

5.1%

 

0.4%

-1%

1%

-1%

Plains

60.35

5.09

13.4%

4.1%

 

0.4%

-1%

-2%

-4%

South Central

57.06

5.10

10.6%

3.8%

 

0.6%

-2%

2%

-1%

Southeast

55.47

6.40

13.6%

6.1%

 

0.6%

-2%

-2%

-3%

Southwest

55.67

5.81

9.7%

5.0%

 

0.4%

-3%

1%

-2%

To see a visual representation of this data and other information broken down by state in an interactive map of the United States, visit http://www.BusinessCreditFacts.com/map.

About the Business Benchmark Report
Experian’s Business Benchmark Report is a monthly look at how businesses are faring in the United States. Designed to monitor the progress of business recovery, the report looks at four key indicators of business health, including commercial risk score, days beyond payment terms, percentage of dollars delinquent and percentage of dollars severely delinquent.

About Experian’s Business Information Services
Experian’s Business Information Services partners with organizations to establish and strengthen customer relationships, enabling them to mitigate risk and improve profitability. The company’s business database provides comprehensive, third-party-verified information on U.S. companies of all sizes, 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 is able to provide market-leading tools that assist clients in processing new applications, managing customer relationships and collecting on delinquent accounts. For more information about Experian’s advanced business-to-business products and services, visit http://www.experian.com/b2b or call 1 800 520 1221.

Contact:
Roslyn Whitehurst
Experian Public Relations
1 714 830 5578 Telephone
roslyn.whitehurst@experian.com Email

About Experian
Experian is the leading global information services company, providing data and analytical tools to clients in more than 65 countries. The company helps businesses to manage credit risk, prevent fraud, target marketing offers and automate decision making. Experian also helps individuals to check their credit report and credit score and protect against identity theft.

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, 2009, was $3.9 billion. Experian employs approximately 15,000 people in 40 countries and has its corporate headquarters in Dublin, Ireland, with operational headquarters in Nottingham, UK; Costa Mesa, California; and São Paulo, Brazil.

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