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Media Contact: Caroline Zimmerman, Editorial Director, 410-740-5560, carolinez@nacm.org

February Credit Managers' Index Retreats to December Low Point

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February's report on the economy from the National Association of Credit Management shows a fall back to December's level of 55.6. Unclear is whether persistent bad weather or more pervasive problems is to blame for slowing business growth.

Columbia, MD: February 28, 2014—The Credit Managers' Index (CMI), published by the National Association of Credit Management (NACM), seems to having a hard time leaving 2013 behind. The February reading fell to 55.6, sending the CMI back to where it was in December, when the index fell to a recent low point.

Prior to its December drop, the CMI had been improving since July 2013, but the sense at the end of last year was that the economy was stalling in the middle of the holiday spending season. A month later the January index bounced back to levels not seen in over two years, reaching 57.3, suggesting that recovery had finally arrived and accompanied by some expectations of more consistent growth through the rest of 2014. But February's reading indicates that those expectations might've been incorrect, or at least premature, according to NACM Economist Chris Kuehl, PhD. "It appears this will be another one of 'those' years. At least it is starting out that way," he said. "The burning question is yet again, which of these months is going to turn out to be the anomaly?"

NACM Selects Dynavistics as Newest Preferred Partner

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Columbia, MD: February 25, 2014—Dynavistics, Inc. was recently selected as the newest addition to the National Association of Credit Management's (NACM's) Preferred Partner Program. The NACM Preferred Partner Program allows members of the organization to more easily share and access data. Specifically, NACM members will now be able to use Collect-IT—a collection management software distributed by Dynavistics—to extract and report their accounts receivable data as well as gain access to the NACM National Trade Credit Report (NTCR). Collect-IT was designed for credit and collection professionals, providing transparency between the sales, credit and collections functions with features such as credit policy documentation, collection action status, performance tracking and a single sign-on for all users. The NTCR provides businesses with factual, accurate, fresh and relevant information on how a prospective customer pays its invoices so that a decision on whether to sell on credit can be made.

Global Connect: Arizona Trade Finance Seminar

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Columbia, Maryland: February 19, 2014 – In partnership with the U.S. Department of Commerce, a coalition of business, trade, and educational organizations will host The Global Connect: Arizona Trade Finance Seminar on Friday, February 21, 2014 at Thunderbird School of Global Management.

The seminar brings together trade finance experts from both the public and private sectors to discuss the resources available to U.S. exporters, especially local small and medium-sized companies, for their financing needs. This seminar is also offered in support of the advancement of U.S. Hispanic-owned businesses in global markets. Participants will have the opportunity to meet with experts one-on-one.

Solid Recovery in the January Credit Managers' Index

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National Association of Credit Management's CMI report for January encourages, rebounds to 57.3. Main indices improved and all sub-indices are now out of contraction territory, indicating December was the likely the anomaly.

Columbia, MD: January 30, 2014—January's reading for the Credit Managers' Index (CMI) from the National Association of Credit Management (NACM) rebounded to 57.3, the highest point reached in over a year and even more robust than the 57.1 notched in November. This now begs the question, which of the last three months is signaling the real trend? The November CMI hit a two-year high followed by a December low that took the index back to summer levels and now the January is back to highs not seen in two years. In December, there was a palpable gloom falling over the economy where the data was concerned. The December CMI recorded a low not seen since July and it looked as if all the gains that started to accumulate in the third and fourth quarters were evaporating. The January data dispels that mood a little.

December Credit Managers' Index Combined Index Fell Dramatically

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Market-watchers looking for holiday cheer would be hard pressed to find any in the December Credit Managers' Index (CMI), published by the National Association of Credit Management (NACM). The Combined Index fell dramatically from 57.1 to 55.6, erasing most of the gains made in the last few months and taking the CMI back to levels not seen since the middle of summer. Though the manufacturing index fell by a full point from 56.7 to 55.7, it was the service sector’s two-point fall from 57.5 to 55.5 reflecting a slow response to Christmas and a slowdown in the housing sector that delivered the hardest blow.

The CMI’s four favorable factors registered the biggest declines, as the gains made in the second half of the year seemed to evaporate. Overall, the favorable factor index fell from 61.3 to 59.3, driven by a sharp reduction in sales, which stumbled from 63.4 in November to 58.7 in December, marking the fifth lowest sales reading in the last 12 months. New credit applications dropped by two points from 59.2 to 57.2, a reading not seen since April, and dollar collections slipped a full point from 59.7 to 58.7. The smallest drop occurred in amount of credit extended, from 63.2 to 62.6, which could be the only silver lining in the favorable factor index. "This suggests there might be an opportunity to recover in the coming months," said NACM Economist Chris Kuehl, PhD. "It gives some faint hope that many companies are still interested in making credit available to the customers they trust."

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