A Powerful Tool
Since its inception, the CMI has been a startlingly accurate economic predictor, proving its worth most notably during the recession.
The CMI is created from a monthly survey of U.S. credit and collections professionals. The survey asks participants to rate whether factors in their
monthly business cycle—such as sales, new credit applications, accounts placed for collections, dollar amount beyond terms—are higher than,
lower than, or same as the previous month. The results reflect the entire cycle of commercial business transactions, providing an accurate,
predictive benchmarking tool.
CMI reports are released to the media the last business day of each month. View the latest report.
All credit and collections professionals in the 50 states and US territories are invited to take the survey each month. NACM membership is not required.
If you would like to receive an email alert when the survey opens, sign up.
In the case of the Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), which NACM Economic Advisor and Managing Director of Armada Corporate Intelligence
Chris Kuehl, PhD frequently refers to in the CMI reports, it depicted an economy flirting with recession in the run-up to the downturn, but
seemed to have trouble committing. The overall PMI reading tiptoed around 50, recording 50.4, 49.9 and 50.7 in September, October and November
of 2007, respectively. It then dipped to 48.7 in December 2007, before hopping back up to 50.5 in January 2008, and eventually crashed to the
30s late in that year and in early 2009. During this period, the CMI mirrored the PMI on occasion, but altogether showed a remarkable
sensitivity to the intricacies of the recession, resisting the month-to-month swings that seemed to characterize the PMI. For credit professionals
looking for the expected economic trend of the next few months, they needed to look no further than the CMI.