CEO Confidence Continues to Improve

Apr 25, 2013, 10:00 ET from The Conference Board

NEW YORK, April 25, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Conference Board Measure of CEO Confidence™, which had increased in the fourth quarter of 2012, improved again in the first quarter of 2013. The Measure now reads 54, up from 46 in the previous quarter (a reading of more than 50 points reflects more positive than negative responses). 

Says Lynn Franco, Director of Economic Indicators at The Conference Board: "CEO Confidence improved again, but still remains rather weak. However, expectations are that conditions will modestly improve in most markets, with the exception of Europe where the outlook for the next six months remains pessimistic."

CEOs' assessment of current economic conditions has grown more positive, with 36 percent claiming conditions are better compared to six months ago, up from 15 percent last quarter. About 29 percent of business leaders say conditions in their own industries have improved, compared with approximately 13 percent in the fourth quarter of 2012.

CEOs' short-term outlook is also more optimistic. Currently, 32 percent of business leaders expect economic conditions to improve over the next six months, up from 23 percent last quarter. Expectations for their own industries are also more upbeat, with 33 percent of CEOs anticipating an improvement in conditions in the months ahead, up from 19 percent in the fourth quarter. 

Global Outlook
CEOs were positive in their assessment of current economic conditions in the U.S., China, Japan and Brazil, but generally pessimistic about conditions in India and Europe. However, business leaders foresee a modest improvement in growth over the next six months and expectations are generally upbeat in all regions with the exception of Europe, where pessimism still prevails.

Survey results were fielded from mid-February to mid-March
Source: CEO Confidence Survey 1st Quarter 2013
The Conference Board

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