IN LINE with current economic predictions, leasing brokers are less optimistic regarding increased inquiries over the next 12 months which stood at  36%in Q2 against 50% in Q1.

However, if you compare the predictions of having the same or more inquiries over the next 12 months, the quarters are very comparable – 71% for Q1 and 70% for Q2.

These numbers came from the Leasing Broker Federation’s latest quarterly research into trends affecting members.

The research also showed that there has a significant upturn in the level of contact brokers are having with customers up to 80% in Q2 compared to 37% in Q1. This is likely to be for a mixture of reasons ranging from requests for contracts be extended, how to do a new vehicle handover – can you still order a new vehicle to prospects discussing cancelling orders.

Whatever the reasons, it will be interesting to see if these higher levels of customer contact is an ongoing feature.

Although there is slightly less optimism regarding fleet size growth, 41% still believe their fleets will grow against a 48% figure in Q1. 23% believe their fleet size will decrease from the Q2 feedback, compared to 19% in Q1. This shows a fairly solid resilience in the market compared to many others.

Increasing demand for PCH or BCH over PCP continues, although PCP seems to remain a relevant product. There is still a growing demand for Fleet Management services and a slight decline in interest for Insurance inclusive contracts and Subscription Services (Car Clubs). There has been increased interest in both Flexible and Shorter Term contract types, which you could put down a link with economic uncertainty and job security.

The interesting thing to note here is that there does seem to be a slight trend in funders leaving the market and less new entrants. During times when lenders are more risk averse and creditworthiness may have had a negative swing, this is and understandable trend. As the economy gathers pace, it will be interesting to see if lenders return to the market or if there is a longer lag time for them to return.

More news on this when the research is released in a couple of weeks’ time.