On March 30, 2022 the latest CFO Survey (formerly called the “Duke/CFO Global Business Outlook”) was released. It contains a variety of statistics regarding how CFOs view business and economic conditions.
In this CFO Survey press release, I found the following to be the most notable excerpts – although I don’t necessarily agree with them:
Optimism about the U.S. economy among CFOs fell in the first quarter of 2022, according to The CFO Survey, a collaboration of Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business and the Federal Reserve Banks of Richmond and Atlanta. Alongside the decline in optimism, expectations of firms for real GDP growth and stock market appreciation both softened. CFOs indicated that their most pressing concerns are around cost pressure and inflation, supply chains, and the availability and quality of labor. Geopolitical risk also entered the list of top concerns.
When asked to rate optimism about the overall U.S. economy on a scale from 0 to 100, the average rating from CFOs was 54.8, well down from the 60.3 reading in the fourth quarter of 2021. Optimism for their own firms’ financial prospects remained relatively unchanged: on average, optimism edged down to 69.6 from the fourth quarter reading of 70.8.
This CFO Survey contains an Optimism Index chart, with the blue line showing U.S. Optimism (with regard to the economy) at 54.8, as seen below:
It should be interesting to see how well the CFOs predict business and economic conditions going forward. I discussed past 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 site 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 4604.23 as this post is written