The most striking aspect of March’s Credit Managers’ Index (CMI), issued by the National Association of Credit Management (NACM), is that sales in both the manufacturing and service sectors jumped—and at a pace not seen in over a year. This reinforces the news from consumer demand studies showing that spending was up last month. The increase in sales was nearly five points, faster than any increase since early 2008. This burst in sales occurred despite the fact that new credit applications were flat. There was a slight extension in the amount of credit extended, but the majority of that increase seems to have originated from companies working with the suppliers and contacts they have had for years as opposed to new additions to the business fold. The combined CMI index improved from 55.2 to 55.7.
Courtesy: Chris Kuehl, Ph.D., NACM economic analyst and board member of BIIA