When NACM's Credit Managers' Index (CMI) drops, so does the confidence of many credit managers. This was the case in March when the service sector stunted the growth in the overall score, hinting at further unpredictability in coming months.
The CMI was unable to hold onto February's growth, but instead, reeled back to a score previously seen earlier this year. Although there's no call for a crisis, NACM Economist Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., suggests creditors stay alert even if the index bounces back into positive territory.
"This was one of those unnerving months where the scores reversed again," Kuehl said. "The numbers are still firmly in the expansion zone, but we all would like to see improvement."
Manufacturing maintained a similar score compared to the prior month; however, the service sector was plagued by downturns in sales, new credit applications, dollar collections and the amount of credit extended.
—Andrew Michaels, editorial associate