On October 8, 2014, The Conference Board and PwC released the 3rd Quarter Measure Of CEO Confidence. The overall measure of CEO Confidence was at 59, down from 62 in the second quarter. [note: a reading of more than 50 points reflects more positive than negative responses]
Notable excerpts from this October 8 Press Release include:
CEOs’ assessment of current economic conditions, however, was more positive. Now, approximately 52 percent claim conditions are better compared to six months ago, up from 46 percent in the second quarter of 2014. Conversely, business leaders’ appraisal of conditions in their own industries declined, with just 41 percent saying conditions in their own industries have improved, compared with 48 percent last quarter.
CEOs’ expectations regarding the short-term outlook were less optimistic. Slightly more than 44 percent of business leaders anticipate economic conditions will improve over the next six months, down from 53 percent last quarter. However, nearly 51 percent expect conditions to remain the same. Expectations for their own industries are also more subdued, with 34 percent anticipating an improvement, down from 46 percent in the second quarter. About 51 percent expect no change in conditions.
The Business Roundtable also released its CEO Economic Outlook Survey for the 3rd Quarter of 2014 last month. Notable excerpts from the September 16 release, titled “CEOs See U.S. Economy Underperforming in Next Six Months”:
The Business Roundtable third quarter 2014 CEO Economic Outlook Index ‒ which provides a picture of the future direction of the U.S. economy based upon CEOs’ plans for sales, capital spending and hiring ‒ declined moderately from the second quarter. Results show plans for capital expenditures, hiring and sales all decreased relative to the previous quarter, with hiring plans declining the most.
CEOs expect 2014 gross domestic product growth of 2.4 percent, roughly the same as last quarter’s estimate of 2.3 percent.
The Business Roundtable CEO Economic Outlook Index – a composite index of CEO expectations for the next six months of sales, capital spending and employment – decreased in the third quarter of 2014 to 86.4 from 95.4 in the second quarter of 2014. The long-term average of the Index is 80.2.
I post various economic forecasts because I believe they should be carefully monitored. However, as those familiar with this blog are aware, I do not necessarily agree with many of the consensus estimates and much of the commentary in these forecast surveys.
The Special Note summarizes my overall thoughts about our economic situation
SPX at 1879.97 as this post is written