Department Stores at Risk to Default Amid Pandemic

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, many credit managers fear their customers may default or file for bankruptcy. According to a recent article in RetailDive, department stores are the most at-risk for defaulting on debt within a year. Department stores are the highest at-risk among consumer companies, with a 42.1% median probability of defaulting on debt....
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System to Aid Small Businesses Affected by COVID-19 Launches

A new system to help ailing small businesses in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic launched April 8, according to an article in Reuters. The U.S. government has approved a $350 billion program to help move small businesses along during these uncertain times.Small businesses affected by the coronavirus are eligible to apply for government-guaranteed ...
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Manufacturing Sector Begins to Slow Down

Manufacturing began to see a slowdown in March, but not on the scale originally anticipated, according to a recent article in Reuters. This is likely because the activity in manufacturing has not yet caught up to the severity of the COVID-19 pandemic as shutdowns in the U.S. did not begin until the second or so week of March—but the readings are st...
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Senate to Vote on COVID-19 Relief Bill, Allocating Money to Businesses

Senators will vote again March 25 on whether to pass the $2 trillion bipartisan package to help stimulate the U.S. economy. While the Senate will vote on this bill, the House of Representatives likely will not act on it until March 26, according to a recent article in Reuters. While the full package has not been announced to the public, most of the...
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US Nears Recession in Wake of Coronavirus Pandemic

The chance the U.S. will be in a recession this year has now reached 80%, according to analysts for Reuters. The impact of the coronavirus has nearly pushed the U.S. completely out of its longest expansion period on record. Businesses have shut down across the world and lockdowns have been issued in major cities worldwide, handicapping the economy....
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Japan's Economy Begins to Slip Amid Coronavirus Outbreak

The Japanese economy may be the next victim of the coronavirus as tourism has fallen significantly since the outbreak. The Bank of Japan (BOJ) has been facing the pressure of a possible recession, according to a recent article in Reuters, and Japan said it will be willing to take "appropriate action" for economic recovery.The threat of recession ha...
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Construction Confidence into 2020 Looks Optimistic

Confidence among construction contractors did not waiver during the end of 2019 and into the beginning of 2020, according to recent index results released by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC). The index spiked in November then remained steady in December.Several variables remained above the growth expectations threshold in December 2019: sa...
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Trade Negotiations Between US and India Reach First Steps

Following a two-day meeting in India, the U.S. and India concluded ongoing trade talks, which may begin a bilateral U.S.-India trade deal, according to a recent article in Reuters. The White House has not given any details on what the trade agreement may look like.Prior to meeting Feb. 24-25, the two nations negotiated for months on terms related t...
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Coronavirus Begins to Impact Italy

The coronavirus has begun to impact parts of Europe, predominately in Italy. The sixth person infected with the virus has died as of Feb. 24, as the virus begins to infect the economy of European nations. According to a recent article in Reuters, Italian shares fell by 5% out of fear for the future.Since Feb. 21, more than 220 people in Italy have ...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for January 17, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—U.S. EconomyWho Has the Leverage?The trade deal signed between the U.S. and China has broken with the usual pattern of trade deals and will likely have an impact on future negotiations between nations. The system established at the end of WWII sought to balance trade talks through the us...
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Outsource or Offshore Your Credit Team? NACM Wants to Hear from You

Do you outsource or offshore your credit team at your company? If so, NACM's editorial team would like to hear from you as part of a research initiative for an upcoming article in ​Business Credit​ magazine.Please take this quick survey to help us reach you:https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/5252HPRIf you would like to participate, you may al...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for January 3, 2020

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—U.S. EconomyFed PlansThis is the week the minutes from the December meeting of the FOMC are released, and this will provide an opportunity to learn what was on their mind at that session. The decision at the time was to leave the rates alone, and there was no dissent from the doves who h...
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Inflation Remains Low, US Economy Still Strong

The Chicago Federal Reserve released its analysis of the U.S. economy Dec. 18, noting favorable outcomes but stating inflation rates remain "worrisomely low," according to an article in Reuters. The labor market and the consumers conversely are "remarkably well" in contrast to inflation.Monetary policy, similarly, is in a "good place," which likely...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for December 13, 2019

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM EconomistShort Items of Interest—U.S. EconomySlower Start than ExpectedThere were some pretty high hopes for the retail season, but they seem to have been somewhat misplaced as the numbers are weaker than expected. The season started off pretty well with a good back-to-school period and a decent Halloween, but the big da...
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Fed Keeps Interest Rates Steady

Interest rates will continue to remain steady, according to the U.S. Federal Reserve. Borrowing costs will likely stay unchanged for an indefinite period of time. While 2020 brings a new presidential election, the Fed predicts the new year will see moderate economic growth and low unemployment.The lending rate sits between 1.5% and 1.75%, some of t...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for December 11, 2019

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM EconomistShort Items of Interest—U.S. EconomyTax Policy Arguments ContinueDespite almost a year of negotiating, there is no end in sight as regards the development of tax breaks. The sense now is that a deal will have to wait until after the first of the year, as there has been no progress on the issue in the Senate. Sev...
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An Unexpected Economic Drop off in November

The service sector in the U.S. saw a slowdown in November, an unexpected turn—especially given the usual health of holiday shopping, according to a recent article in Reuters. Most of the slowdown came from concerns related to trade tensions and worker shortage.This off-kilter behavior appeared in The Institute for Supply Management's (ISM) index, w...
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Pending Home Sales Drop in October

Pending home sales fell during the month of October, according to the National Association of Realtors. The overall index for pending home sales dipped by nearly 2%. Contracts to purchase previously owned homes in the U.S. also fell in October.The pending index provides a forward look into the health of real estate and construction of new residenti...
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Brexit Vote Delayed—Yes, Again

A Brexit decision has been delayed yet again, further stalling the inevitable futures of the global supply chain. In a Saturday vote, the U.K. parliament voted 322-306 to delay Prime Minister Boris Johnson's Brexit deal, according to Supply Chain Dive. Parliament has now asked the EU for an extension until Jan. 31, 2020, but no decision has yet bee...
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Strategic Global Intelligence Brief for October 18, 2019

By Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM Economist—Short Items of Interest—U.S. EconomyManufacturing "Fragility"The latest industrial production numbers showed a fairly steep decline in the manufacturing sector—the biggest part of the measurement. The utilities held their own and there was a small decline in the mining sector (oil and gas) as well. The overall ...
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