New business volumes were up 2% in the US equipment finance market for January 2014, according to the monthly index of the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA).
The index, which surveys 25 companies, estimated that $6bn (4.36bn) in new business was written in the US during the month. This represented a 44% drop from the typical December spike, but an increase year-on-year.
The percentage of late payments over 30 days saw a small decrease to 1.8% from 1.9% in December, and the number of delinquent payments remained unchanged on January 2013.
Write-offs also remained unchanged on the year at 0.3% of all loans, while credit approvals took a dip on the December rate of 78.3% of all applications down to 76.9%.
Only 54% of the finance companies surveyed reported putting in more applications for approval than the month previously. This was a drop from the 57% of December.
The Equipment and Leasing Foundation’s monthly confidence index, published separately as the MCI-EFI, continued to show the sector was confident about business, recording 63.3 versus 64.9 for December, which is still the second highest figure in two years.
William G Sutton, president and chief executive of ELFA, said: "At the start of the new year, equipment finance activity picked up where it left off for most of 2013. New business volume shows modest, incremental growth while credit losses continue at historic lows. With fiscal pressures in Washington subsiding, at least for the time being, and most major U.S. economic indicators showing positive signs, we are hopeful that these factors will help promote a favorable climate for continued investment by U.S. businesses in capital equipment in 2014 and beyond."