On March 11, 2015 the March Duke/CFO Magazine Global Business Outlook Survey (pdf) was released. It contains a variety of statistics regarding how CFOs view business and economic conditions.
In this CFO Survey, I found the following to be the most notable excerpts:
About 70 percent of U.S. companies indicate that wages are starting to outpace inflation. Wage growth should be at least 3 percent in tech, services and consulting, manufacturing and health care.
U.S. CFOs are very optimistic about 2015. On a scale from 0 to 100, they rate the outlook at 65, the most optimistic expectations for the U.S. economy since 2007. Even with this optimism, U.S. executives express pressing concerns related to governmental policies and regulations, the cost of benefits, economic uncertainty, difficulty in hiring and retaining the right employees, and data security.
Twenty-seven percent of U.S. companies expect to make an acquisition during the next 12 months. Merger activity will be especially robust in communications/media and technology, where more than half of companies expect to acquire the assets of another firm.
The CFO survey contains two Optimism Index chart, with the bottom chart showing U.S. Optimism (with regard to the economy) at 65, as seen below:
It should be interesting to see how well the CFOs predict business and economic conditions going forward. I discussed various aspects of this, and the importance of these predictions, in the July 9, 2010 post titled “The Business Environment”.
(past posts on CEO and CFO Surveys can be found under the “CFO and CEO Confidence” tag)
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 2040.20 as this post is written