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Oct 4, 2023

SMBs face financial challenges, confidence low despite upcoming holiday season

New data revealed business owners are showing low confidence for Q4 2023, a slump of 24% compared to last year’s data. Only 15% expressed optimism about the upcoming holiday season. 


“Small and medium-sized businesses are the backbone of our economy and have shown remarkable resilience, even in the toughest economic climates," said Jeff Brown, Head of Commercial Solutions at Equifax Canada. "They're dealing with staffing shortages, rising interest rates, and supply chain disruptions, but they persevere." 


Almost half of small and medium businesses (42%) expressed concerns about the current financial landscape. 64% of SMBs expressed concerns about their cash flow, while 53% denoted struggling with limited access to business financing. 18% have faced past bankruptcy or insolvency. Average business debt has spiked to $44.7k, up 22.3% from a year ago, and industrial trade delinquencies are nearing pre-pandemic levels. 


"Businesses will be dealing with the dual challenges of high inflation and the elevated cost of borrowing,” said Brown. “We anticipate an increase in demand for credit, particularly from enterprises wrestling with existing debt. Additionally, companies impacted by natural disasters could experience extended recovery periods and require government support." 

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