Financing and risk

The lending attitude of financial institutions towards the large companies represented in the survey improved further and is at its highest level since the financial crisis. Therefore financing for the more expansionary strategies should not be a concern for these companies. Economic uncertainty has fallen to more normal levels. Swedish CFOs’ view uncertainty as far lower than their euro zone counterparts.

How CFOs rate sources of external funding

Bank Borrowing
Corporate Debt
Internal Financing

Lending attitude

The lending attitude of financial institutions is at its highest level since economic uncertainty has fallen to more normal levels. Among sectors, Financial Services was actually the one where CFOs had the least positive attitude. Meanwhile 100 percent of CFOs in the Life Science, TMT and Manufacturing sectors reported a favorable attitude by financial institutions.

Probability of counterparties’ default

The probability of counterparties’ default continued to head lower, pushing the counterparty risk subindex to a new all-time high at 56.7 (prior survey: 56.2) and the NB to -42 percent from -40 percent in the spring. None of the CFOs viewed the risk as above average. Looking at the different sectors, in CB&T and Life Science as many as half the CFOs saw a below-average probability

Economic uncertainty

Uncertainty is considered to have fallen to more normal levels by a large majority of CFOs (68 percent), and the NB is at the lowest level (13 percent) since the question was added to the survey in 2016. Swedish CFOs’ view uncertainty as far lower than their euro zone counterparts, which the NB of 13 percent compared to 40 percent for euro zone countries clearly shows. CFOs in the Manufacturing and Financial Services sectors stand out, since they view uncertainty as much higher than their peers in other sectors.

Taking on risk

Taking on further risk in the balance sheet is still viewed with heavy skepticism by Swedish CFOs. Compared to euro zone CFOs, the Swedes are far more skeptical, with an NB of -47 percent, while the euro zone countries have only -27 percent. Among sectors, Life Science is the most positive towards taking on greater risk while the Other and Financial Services sectors are the most negative.

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