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68% Of US Businesses More Profitable Now Than Pre-pandemic But COVID Worries Remain, Says New Report

Wednesday, September 21, 2022
  • As the fallout from the pandemic continues, almost a third (31%) of US businesses say that Covid is still the biggest challenge they face
  • Businesses also highlighted supply chain disruption, staff procurement, and the Ukraine conflict as major areas of worry
  • Despite this, 85% of US businesses say they are optimistic about their business and growth during 2022/2023

EQ Riskfactor, a leading global provider of risk management software for the commercial finance market (part of Equiniti Group), has today launched a new international report. The Global Business Borrower Report provides a detailed snapshot of current business sentiment in five key markets: the US, UK, France, Germany and the Netherlands.

The report found that 68% of US businesses say they are more profitable today than they were before the pandemic, compared to 71% of UK businesses. Similarly, 85% of US businesses say they are optimistic about their business and growth during 2022/ 2023, compared to 90% in the UK market.

In total across all five markets a clear majority (80%) of all businesses surveyed say they are optimistic about their business and growth during 2022/2023, including 28% who say they are extremely optimistic. Within mainland Europe, 80% of German businesses describe themselves as confident, followed by France (76%), and the Netherlands (69%).

Nearly two-thirds (65%) of all European businesses surveyed also say they are more profitable today than they were before the pandemic, with France at 69%, Germany at 67%, and the Netherlands at 43%.

Aaron Hughes, CEO Equiniti Riskfactor, commented:

“Despite concerns about the direction of the economy and a potential recession, it’s encouraging to see that US businesses still have a positive outlook. The businesses that have managed to stay afloat through the last few tough years are typically the most resilient. Many of these have also had to undergo some degree of cost-cutting in the last two years, as they were forced to right-size their cost base. This cost-cutting has put many companies in a strong position to profit from the reopening of the economy, but they will still have to face the substantial challenges that lie ahead.”

Despite this optimism there are certainly some major concerns on the horizon. As the fallout from the pandemic continues, almost a third (31%) of US businesses say that Covid is still the biggest challenge they face. This was followed by worries about rising energy bills and inflation, which was highlighted by 17% of US businesses and supply chain disruption, which was selected by 14%.

Staff procurement was less of a concern in the US, cited by only 9% of businesses as their biggest concern. Difficulties with the labor market were emphasized by more European businesses as a top concern, with 18% of German businesses ranking this first, followed by the Netherlands (14%), and France (11%). Just 7% of UK businesses though pointed to labor market issues as a major concern.

Rising energy bills and inflation was a key concern across all respondents. Almost half (49%) of all businesses surveyed listed it in their top three worries. Similarly, 45% of all businesses put supply chain disruption in their top three concerns.

Aaron Hughes concluded:

“There are certainly major challenges on the horizon, even for these resilient businesses. While concerns about the labor market have been loudly publicized, particularly in the US, it looks like the ongoing impact of Covid still remains the major challenge for businesses. Of course the impact of the pandemic has also had knock-on effects on the labor market, inflation and rising energy prices.

“With the northern hemisphere moving into winter soon, pushing up energy use, and little sign of any end to the conflict in Ukraine, energy costs could soon become an even more major concern, particularly for European businesses. Despite some positive signs that inflation in the US may be levelling off, businesses should make use of all available support and plan carefully in order to tackle these challenges and deliver on their optimistic predictions for 2023.”

Download the full report here.

ENDS

 

Contact:

Rostrum

Patrick Davies
Tel: 02034 047 729
Email: p.davies@rostrum.agency 

Methodology:

Unless otherwise specified, all data in the release comes from The Global Business Borrower report. To compile the report Equiniti, surveyed close to 500 businesses in a range of sectors across the UK, US, Germany, France, and the Netherlands, about their current outlook and conditions. The survey consisted of 27 questions and was conducted in Q2 of 2022.

Notes to Editor: 

About EQ (Equiniti Group)

EQ is an international technology-led services and payments specialist. With over 5,000 employees, it supports 37 million people in 120 countries. EQ’s purpose is to care for every customer and simplify every transaction, delivered with less of an impact on the environment.

EQ Riskfactor (part of Equiniti) is the leading provider of risk management and fraud analytics software and consulting for the global commercial finance market including factoring organizations, banks and alternative lenders. In the UK, over 90% of the receivables finance market use EQ Riskfactor’s products.