Small and medium sized companies are starting to borrow for expansion. These are big listed companies levering up their balance sheets. Clear why it's happening now: banks are sucking wind because all their other businesses are stagnant so they're like, "hey, let's lend some money!" and so lowering lending standards. SMEs are borrowing because, one, the world didn't end like everyone said it would during 2010-2013, two, they haven't invested a dime in like, six years - there must be SOME positive IRR projects to do, and three, most importantly, "everyone knows" that rates are set to rise.
This would all be great for the economy except consumers look increasingly played out. That's what happens when the number of folks with jobs remains four million below the peak, and those that do are barely keeping up with inflation. Single family housing starts may have peaked!
Big Banks Ramp Up Business Lending - WSJ.comhttp://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304626304579506081694091194