NACM’s Credit Managers’ Index Shows Modest Improvement

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After months of staying on a volatile roller coaster ride, December’s economic report from the National Association of Credit Management eased slightly upward, finishing the year at 52.8 from 52.6.

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The good news is that the numbers did not dip as some had expected.

Showing only minor improvement, the December report of the Credit Managers’ Index (CMI) from the National Association of Credit Management (NACM) ended the year modestly at 52.8. Since November’s index, the combined score increased by 0.2 points, an upward easing that is essentially a “flat” reading, according to NACM Economist Chris Kuehl, Ph.D.

“The good news is that the numbers did not dip as some had expected,” Kuehl explained. “The other good news is that most of the stability was in the unfavorable categories and that is slightly more encouraging as far as the future is concerned.”

The four subcategories within the index of favorable factors all remained well above the 50.0 contraction zone, while the three of the six subcategories within the index of unfavorable factors remained below it. However, the overall score of the unfavorable index emerged from negative territory at 50.3. “Granted, this is a razor-thin margin and no reason for wild celebration, but the reading this month is still better than it has been since August,” Kuehl noted.

Unfortunately, the manufacturing sector did not reflect the same outlook, with the subcategories of sales and amount of credit extended dramatically declining. The index of unfavorable factors showed slight improvement, but still remained in the contraction zone. The service sector, however, improved with positive activity occurring in the retail and construction industries.

For a full breakdown of the manufacturing and service sector data and graphics, view the complete December 2015 report at CMI archives may also be viewed on NACM’s website at

NACM, headquartered in Columbia, MD, supports more than 14,000 business credit and financial professionals worldwide with premier industry services, tools and information. NACM and its network of affiliated associations are the leading resource for credit and financial management information, education, products and services designed to improve the management of business credit and accounts receivable. NACM’s collective voice has influenced federal legislative policy results concerning commercial business and trade credit to our nation’s policy makers for more than 100 years, and continues to play an active part in legislative issues pertaining to business credit and corporate bankruptcy. NACM's annual Credit Congress & Exposition conference is the largest gathering of credit professionals in the world.

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Jennifer Lehman
National Association of Credit Management
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