Sunday, February 12, 2012

CEO Confidence Rebounds, "Remains Rather Subdued, Improved Short-Term Outlook"

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CEO Confidence The Measure of CEO Confidence was up +7 to 49 for the Q4 2011. This was after plunging in the prior 2 quarters. The previous Q3 2011 was a 10-quarter low of 42, the lowest reading since 30 in Q1 2009. The current level is at approximately the same reading as Q3 2010.

Measure of CEO Confidence (Chart) Below is a chart of The Conference Board Measure of CEO Confidence from Q3 2008 through the latest quarter reported. A reading of more than 50 points reflects more positive than negative responses. The Post-Great Recession high has been 67 in Q1 2011. The Great Recession low was 24 in Q4 2008.


Commentary CEO confidence for Q4 2011 has rebounded, but is slightly pessimistic. The prior Q3 2011 reading was taken from mid-August to mid-September, just after the USA debt ceiling gridlock and downgrade by S&P. The current Q4 2011 reading was taken from mid-November to mid-December as USA economic data improved. Looking at the short-term outlook, CEOs do not expect a strong economic recovery, "about 32 percent of business leaders anticipate an improvement in economic conditions over the next six months, up from 19 percent in the third quarter".

Supplemental Charts Below are additional charts of CEO expectations and sentiment, from Q3 2008 through the latest quarter reported, for Economic Expectations, 6 Months Ahead and Expectations for Own Industry, 6 Months Ahead. The overall trend is consistent with the Measure of CEO Confidence, an improved sentiment and short-term outlook.


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