Vermont has 'healthiest' small businesses in US

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Vermont has 'healthiest' small businesses in US

Wed, 05/18/2016 - 2:50pm -- tim

Vermont Business Magazine Vermont's small businesses are the best credit risks in the nation, according to a new report that looked at analytics such as bankruptcies and foreclosures. Because of the profound, far-reaching impact of small business on the US economy, Experian, the leading global information services company, teamed with Moody's Analytics to develop the Experian/Moody's Analytics Main Street Report. The new quarterly report benchmarks the overall financial health of small businesses, identifies emerging trends and provides insight into what these trends mean for small businesses and the economy as a whole. The states with the highest average business credit scores were Vermont (62.6), North Dakota (61.8) and South Dakota (61.7)

"Gaining deeper insight into the health of small businesses is important for credit-granting organizations, as well as the small-business owner," said Gavin Harding, senior business consultant for Experian. "While credit grantors can leverage the information to make more profitable financial decisions, small-business owners can better understand the fluctuations in their industry and region. By working with Moody's Analytics, we are able to combine our expertise and data resources to deliver a more holistic view of the trends impacting the business community in particular and the economy overall."

The Experian/Moody's Analytics Main Street Report leverages a combination of business credit data (including credit balances, delinquency rates and utilization rates) and macroeconomic data (including employment rates, income, retail sales and investments) to provide a more accurate assessment of the health of small businesses.

The first quarter 2016 report shows that credit conditions for small businesses have remained relatively stable, as delinquency and bankruptcy rates hold steady at low levels. In fact, much of the slight decrease in delinquencies was driven by fewer small businesses falling within the 61 to 90 and 91+ days past due categories.

Additionally, the report shows that small businesses have begun to expand their credit lines while keeping their utilization rates down. Through a combination of the increase in credit availability and small gains in balances, the average credit utilization for a small business dropped nearly 17 percent from the previous year.

"Small businesses have expanded their access to credit, but appear to be holding off on significant investment," continued Harding. "While the sector is stable, owners may be hesitant to invest in their businesses due to volatility in the markets or regional factors such as the uncertainty in the energy sector."

"Small business credit conditions continue to improve, and near-term prospects are good," said Mark Zandi, chief economist for Moody's Analytics, and who has reported on the Vermont economy many times in recent years. "Delinquencies and bankruptcies have declined in most industries and regions of the country for more than a year. The energy industry is the only exception. There are threats to the positive small business credit outlook, including prospects for rising interest rates and volatile financial markets, but those threats appear modest."

Other Q1 2016 findings:

  • Despite a strong economic performance relative to the rest of the country over the past several years, bankruptcy rates were elevated in the Southwest and the West
  • Delinquency rates for the retail industry ticked up slightly during the first quarter of 2016 as a result of weak retail sales
  • The top three states with the highest average business credit score* were Vermont (62.6), North Dakota(61.8) and South Dakota (61.7)

In-depth insight and commentary from the Experian/Moody's Analytics Main Street Report will be presented in a Webinar at 10 a.m. Pacific time/1 p.m. Eastern time on June 28. If you would like to register for the event, visithttp://bit.ly/1s6vlmG. For more information on the Experian/Moody's Analytics Main Street Report, visithttp://bit.ly/1UYWvHP.  

About the Experian/Moody's Analytics Main Street Report

Experian joined forces with Moody's Analytics, a leading independent provider of economic forecasting, to create a detailed report that provides insight into the health of U.S. businesses. The Experian/Moody's Analytics Main Street Report is published quarterly to show fluctuations in the market and discuss factors impacting the business economy.

About Moody's Analytics

Moody's Analytics helps capital markets and risk management professionals worldwide respond to an evolving marketplace with confidence. The company offers unique tools and best practices for measuring and managing risk through expertise and experience in credit analysis, economic research and financial risk management. By providing leading-edge software, advisory services, and research, including the proprietary analysis of Moody's Investors Service, Moody's Analytics integrates and customizes its offerings to address specific business challenges. Moody's Analytics is a subsidiary of Moody's Corporation (NYSE: MCO), which reported revenue of $3.5 billion in 2015, employs approximately 10,800 people worldwide and maintains a presence in 36 countries. Further information is available at www.moodysanalytics.com.

About Experian's Business Information Services

Experian's Business Information Services is a leader in providing data and predictive insights to organizations, helping them mitigate risk and improve profitability. The company's business database provides comprehensive, third-party-verified information on virtually all U.S. companies, with the industry's most extensive data on the broad spectrum of small and midsize businesses.

By leveraging state-of-the-art technology and superior data-compilation techniques, Experian provides market-leading tools that proactively support the entire credit life cycle, enabling our clients to find new customers, process new applications, manage customer relationships and collect on delinquent accounts.

About Experian

We are the leading global information services company, providing data and analytical tools to our clients around the world. We help businesses to manage credit risk, prevent fraud, target marketing offers and automate decision making. We also help people to check their credit report and credit score and protect against identity theft. In 2015, we were named one of the "World's Most Innovative Companies" by Forbes magazine.

We employ approximately 17,000 people in 37 countries and our corporate headquarters are in Dublin, Ireland, with operational headquarters in Nottingham, UK; California, US; and São Paulo, Brazil.

Experian plc is listed on the London Stock Exchange (EXPN) and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 index. Total revenue for the year ended March 31, 2016, was US$4.6 billion.

To find out more about our company, please visit http://www.experianplc.com or watch our documentary, "Inside Experian."

Experian and the Experian marks used herein are trademarks or registered trademarks of Experian Information Solutions, Inc. Other product and company names mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners.

COSTA MESA, Calif., May 18, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Experian. To download a copy of the Q1 2016 report, visit http://bit.ly/1UYWvHP

* Based on a scale of 1 to 100 (with 100 being least risky); predicts the likelihood of severe delinquency (more than 91 days past due) within the next 12 months