(Reuters) – U.S. companies’ borrowing to spend on capital investments fell 10 percent in March from a year earlier, the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA) said on Tuesday.

Companies signed up for $8.2 billion in new loans, leases and lines of credit last month, down from $9.1 billion a year earlier.

Borrowings jumped 39 percent in March from the previous month.

“First quarter new business volume got off to a slow start, relative to Q1 last year. This was not unexpected…,” ELFA Chief Executive Officer Ralph Petta said, adding that the overall U.S. economy continued to perform reasonably well.

“Headwinds to this benign scenario include a softening in global economies and continued international trade frictions, particularly with China and Europe,” Petta said.

Washington-based ELFA,