Access to financing has evolved in the United States. The chart on the left shows leverage loan participants, who used to be primarily banks but have expanded heavily in the last 15 years to include non-bank companies and funds, like private sponsors and asset managers.
However, this evolution has not been global. As shown on the right chart, while the U.S. has diverse sourcing of financing through banks, capital markets, and private markets, European financing is still dominated by bank loans.
During this pandemic, capital markets were supported heavily by the Fed actions, which also eased restrictions on banks. This helped ease market friction and keep credit markets functioning and active. However, support programs in Europe, often facilitated by the banks, could put pressure on European financing as the pandemic persists and businesses continue to suffer.