News: International News

U.S. Trade Tensions with China Not Yet Impacting Most Vendor Relationships

Wednesday, November 14, 2018  
Share |

Two in three (65 percent) companies are not seeing U.S. trade tensions impact their relationships with Chinese vendors, despite highly publicized tariffs and trade negotiations, according to a Dun & Bradstreet survey of finance professionals. Of the remaining 35 percent who are experiencing challenges, only 5 percent have actually changed their payment practices as a result. 

Respondents cited the most influential event affecting finance operations since 2016 as:

  • 2018 tax reform (33 percent)
  • Federal interest rate hikes (22 percent)
  • Internal technology adoption (15 percent)
  • International tariffs and trade agreements (13 percent)
  • Market corrections (9 percent)
  • FASB’s new revenue recognition standard, ASC 606 (8 percent)

With technology adoption having the third largest impact on corporate finance, respondents were asked about their predictions for the future of payments technology. Nearly half (44 percent) of professionals believe that B2B payments will be dominated by online payment platforms or e-checks by 2028; this is followed by 26 percent choosing the hotly discussed blockchain technology and smart contracts. Credit cards fell behind these newer options, but 17 percent of those surveyed have faith that cards will continue to rein supreme in B2B payments a decade from now.

As follow-up, Dun & Bradstreet asked professionals if their company had already adopted the technology they selected as the most common B2B payment method in 10 years. Half (49 percent) said yes, and 22 percent say their companies do have a plan to adopt the technology. But, respondents who selected blockchain as the future dominant payment method fell far behind these numbers; only 20 percent work for companies who already use blockchain for B2B payments. The remaining responses were about evenly divided on whether their companies had a plan to adopt blockchain for B2B payments in the future (34 percent) or not (32 percent).