The economy’s next booster shot — businesses armed with credit
Businesses are armed with money in the form of credit — which could lead to a big-spending boost for the economy.
- Bank of America and JPMorgan have a combined $1t in credit lent to businesses that haven’t been spent yet, up 20% from 2020.
- Banks are getting more inquiries about new and existing credit lines — a sign companies are ready to spend.
Where is demand highest? Banks are seeing the highest demand from companies in health healthcare, industrial products, food products and wholesale supply companies.
- ~46% are expecting more spending and ~38% needing more credit, much higher than 2 years ago — according to a JPMorgan survey.
- Businesses are planning major spending on automation and technology projects — says Jim Glassman, head economist at JPMorgan.
Who could benefit? Bank stocks — which earn interest on the credit used by businesses. But with businesses sitting on massive amounts of unused credit, banks will have to wait until businesses are ready to spend. Who else?
Looking ahead: The big spend might not come at all. JPMorgan is forecasting corporate spending growth to slow to 5.8% this quarter — down from 12.9% in the previous quarter.
While businesses have a lot of borrowing capacity, there’s no guarantee they’ll start spending. But if and when they do, their customers could see a nice bump in sales.