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Lenders Remain Optimistic About U.S. Economy, Survey Finds

October 11, 2018, 07:09 AM
Filed Under: Economy

From the third quarter Phoenix Management “Lending Climate in America” Survey, results show a positive outlook for the U.S. Economy in both the near- and long-term as lenders confidence in the U.S. economy continues to strengthen.

Lenders’ confidence on how they expect the U.S. economy to perform during the next six months continues to increase and established a record high score in the history of the Phoenix “Lending Climate in America” survey, with a grade point average of 3.08, a 25-percentage point increase from the Q2 2018 results of 2.83. Additionally, the GPA for the U.S. economy beyond the next six months saw a slight increase of four percentage points to 2.46 from the previous quarter’s results of 2.42.

Furthermore, lenders were surveyed on whether they think the U.S. economy will benefit from re-negotiating NAFTA. Of the lenders surveyed, 60% think the U.S. economy will benefit from re-negotiating NAFTA as it has aging elements that should be revisited by the U.S., Mexico, and Canada. On the contrary, 24% of lenders surveyed think the U.S. economy will continue to grow whether NAFTA is changed or not, and 16% think that re-negotiating NAFTA could have serious consequences for the U.S. economy.

In addition, lenders were surveyed on their customers’ growth expectations for the next six months to a year. 58% of respondents indicate that their customers will have “moderate” growth expectations, while 33% expect their customers to experience “strong” growth in the next six months. The strength of “moderate” and “strong” growth responses is a positive signal from lenders on the U.S. economy.

Lenders were also surveyed this quarter on what they think the long-term impact of President Trump’s proposed tariffs will have on U.S. companies. 56% of lenders opinions were negative in regard to Trump’s proposed tariffs and believe that it will cause U.S. companies’ costs to increase resulting in higher prices for consumers, manufacturing to move offshore, and ultimately a slowdown in U.S. GDP growth. Of the lenders surveyed, 44% expressed positive view of the proposed tariffs, and these lenders believe the proposed tariffs will cause an increase in demand for American-made products, which will increase production in American factories, eliminate trade barriers, and help shrink the U.S.'s $568 billion trade deficit.

“This quarter’s results showed a near term GPA grade of 3.08, and a long-term GPA of 2.46 which represents an overall ‘B’ grade and continues to prove lenders confidence in the U.S. economy. This increasing confidence in the near and long term was further supported by the meaningful increase in lenders’ expectations for their customers “moderate” and “strong” growth expectations for the next six months to a year.” says Michael Jacoby, Senior Managing Director and Shareholder of Phoenix.

 To see the full results of Phoenix’s “Lending Climate in America” Survey, please visit

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