B2B payment practices trends, Germany 2024

Payment Practices Barometer

  • Germany
  • Consumer Durables,
  • Construction,
  • Automotive/Transport

Companies in Germany are having to grapple with the consequences of a deteriorated credit risk landscape.

Key takeaways from the report for Germany  

The 2024 Payment Practices Barometer survey for Germany was conducted between the end of Q1 and the beginning of Q2 2024. The findings should therefore be viewed with this in mind.

Cashflow concerns mount amid bleak credit risk landscape

  • As the German economy struggles to grow businesses across all sectors of our survey show strong reliance on the use of trade credit to facilitate B2B sales. This approach aligns with volatile demand in an economic climate where inflation and tight monetary policy put pressure on borrowing costs.
  • 50% of B2B sales in the German construction industry are made on credit, mainly to encourage repeat business, and a substantial 81% of companies offer trade credit. These figures are almost identical in the automotive sector. Although only 32% of B2B sales in the consumer durables sector are made on credit, 92% of businesses say they offer trade credit to customers.

Widespread alarm about insolvency risk upward trend

  • A wide range of concerns emerge among German companies in our survey, both short-term and looking further ahead. There is widespread anxiety about the outlook for growth in the domestic economy, as well as worry about persistently low consumer confidence
    negatively affecting consumer spending.
  • Potential cyber-threat disruptions that could affect business operations are a concern for both the German automotive and consumer durables sectors. The construction industry has a particular worry about its capability to secure new clients and projects during the
    coming months.

The Atradius Payment Practices Barometer is an annual survey of business-to-business (B2B) payment practices in markets across the world. Its findings can give valuable insights into the current dynamics of corporate payment behaviour in B2B trade. It can also help companies doing business, or planning to do so, in the markets polled to identify emerging future trends in the payment practices of B2B customers. 

Interested in finding out more? 

For a complete overview of the 2024 survey results for Germany and Western Europe, please download the full reports available in the related documents section below. 

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