US Import Prices Down, Not Sustainable for Future

The price of U.S. imports saw the largest drop in two years as of June—but this drop is not likely to last after tariffs on foreign goods are imposed. Import prices jumped by 0.9% in May, while June saw a sharp decrease of 0.4%, a dip that comes close only to the drop in February 2016, according to the Labor Department. Imported food saw a signific...
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Construction Material Prices ‘Rising Rapidly’

Economic progress is dwindling in the eyes of Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) economists who reported a nearly 10% gain in 2018 construction material prices in June over last year. ABC noted a 9.6% increase in prices compared to 2017, with a 9.8% gain in nonresidential construction, during its analysis of U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics d...
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‘Imminent, Serious’ Inflation on the Horizon

Inflation is becoming increasingly problematic for U.S. producers. Unanticipated gains in June's Producer Price Index (PPI), released July 11, have economists predicting rising costs for manufacturing and construction material in connection to the U.S. administration's tariffs on various imports. According to Reuters , the PPI reached an annual inc...
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Survey Shows Tax Reform Likely Will Not Increase Spending

Even with a tax reform passed by the Trump administration, corporate spending will likely not see an increase, according to a report from the Association for Financial Professionals (AFP). Forty percent of the 640 corporate treasury and finance executives surveyed do not expect their spending to change in the near future. Even though 60% said they ...
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Saskatchewan to Introduce Prompt Payment Legislation

Another Canadian province is updating legislation to help the construction industry. Initial amendments to Ontario's Construction Lien Act went into effect July 1, increasing lien time tables to give contractors and subcontractors an extra 15 days to preserve a lien. New rules to prompt payments will go into effect in fall 2019. Saskatchewan is fol...
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UK Trade Credit Insurance Claims Up 50%

Trade credit insurance claims across the United Kingdom are at their highest level in nearly 10 years. There were just shy of 4,000 new claims during the first quarter of 2018, according to the Association of British Insurers (ABI). "Never has the importance of trade credit insurance been greater—the survival of any business could be at risk withou...
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June CMI Dips Slightly, Still Near Cycle High

The Credit Managers' Index (CMI) from NACM retreated slightly in June, dropping from a 12-month high in May to 56.3 this month. Despite a modest decline in June, credit managers are reporting continued improvement in dollar collections after an unexpected fallout in April. The overall combined CMI remained above a score of 56 for two consecutive mo...
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Rising Interest Rates to Affect Corporate Credit

Corporate credit growth during the first quarter of 2018 remained strong despite an uptick in rates. However, it is uncertain if businesses can continue to keep pace with growing interest rates during this economic expansion. "Businesses appear to be taking the recent series of rate hikes by the FOMC [Federal Open Market Committee] and subsequent r...
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NACM's Graduate School of Credit and Financial Management Kicks Off

NACM's Graduate School of Credit and Financial Management (GSCFM) is underway, with first- and second-year students diving into intensive courses. Instructors Wanda Borges, Esq.; Susan Fee, M.Ed. L.P.C.; Charles Mulford, Ph.D., CPA; and William J. Russell, JD, kicked off the first three days of classes. During the demanding, 10-day-long program, st...
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Dated Payroll Tech Hinders Key Performance Indicators

Tracking key performance indicators (KPI) can give credit managers an idea of how business is doing and provide guidelines for improvement. However, analyses are only as good as the tools used to complete them, and according to a new joint survey, using dated technology will hinder performance. Nearly 1,000 professionals across several industries p...
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US Small Businesses Expect Revenue Growth, More Hiring in 2018

Access to financing hasn't been a problem for small businesses in the U.S., according to a Federal Reserve annual survey, which found 72% of respondents expecting revenue growth this year. Results of the online questionnaire were released on May 22 with responses from nearly 8,200 companies during the latter half of 2017. On Tuesday, Reuters report...
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US Rate Hikes Could Impact Asia-Pacific Banks

U.S. economists tend to keep their ears to the ground when the Fed hints at foreseeable rate hikes, but the country's latest monetary tightening outlook is also catching the attention of Asia-Pacific banks that could face repercussions in foreign funding. On May 17, Fitch Ratings stated it anticipates the Fed fund rate to reach 3.25% by the end of ...
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Agile Businesses See Benefits From Tech Adoption

Keeping up with today's technological advancements isn't an easy feat, especially in the workplace where new tech requires a new routine. As small businesses learn to adapt, a new study found that outside pressure to become technologically savvy may do more harm than good. In a collaborative global study, growth partnership company Frost & Sull...
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Mexican Corporates Credit Implications Depend on NAFTA Outcome

Amid the ongoing North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) negotiations, Mexican corporates are finding ways to adapt to the current economic climate. So far, credit impacts are minimal but could take a negative turn if NAFTA talks end with its discontinuation. According to a Fitch Ratings report on May 16, corporates have spent the past decade d...
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Oil Prices Grow Amid US’s Iran Nuclear Agreement Pullout

Oil prices reached a three-and-a-half-year high on May 17, fueling concerns of a narrowing supply that followed U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear agreement last week. In comparing the latest CNBC report with a Reuters report in March, oil prices rose about $10 a barrel in less than two months to $80, with anot...
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Small Business Profits Hit 45-Year High

Profit growth among U.S. small businesses struck a 45-year high in April, as the latest National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB) Economic Trends Survey showed a drop in poor sales and bump in its Small Business Optimism Index. The index increased only slightly by 0.1 points over March to a score of 104.8. From a credit perspective, the ...
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Trade Tariffs Halt U.S. Small Manufacturers’ Hiring, Investments

The ripple effect of the U.S. administration's trade tariffs has struck the country's small manufacturers, Reuters reports, as they scale back hiring and investments due to rising import costs. Following President Donald Trump's implementation of steel and aluminum import taxes in March, Reuters began interviews with several small- to mid-sized man...
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Global Average DSO Hits 66 Days, Expected to Increase in 2018

Trustworthy relationships between companies and customers have boosted the global average Days Sales Outstanding (DSO) to a 10-year high, which credit insurer Euler Hermes recorded at 66 days in 2017. According to its May 5 report, Euler Hermes predicts the global average to reach 67 days by the end of this year. The annual review and forecast was ...
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Second of Four Predicted Rate Hikes Expected in June

With rising inflation underway, investors are anticipating yet another interest rate hike from the U.S. Federal Reserve in June—the second of as many as four increases that are predicted in 2018. The Fed's first lending rate increase came in March when it grew by a quarter percentage point from 1.5% to 1.75%, Reuters reported. Borrowing costs began...
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Tech Use Huge Factor in Banking Competition

The ability to keep up with the times may literally break the bank if financial institutions choose not to embrace the technological advancements in the sector, particularly as it relates to payments and lending. According to Moody's Investors Service, banks that are willing to tap into this digital innovation will establish and potentially maintai...
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