US CEOs Are More Optimistic on Economy

According to the Business Roundtable survey, the group’s CEO Economic Outlook Index rose to 84.3 in the second quarter from 81 in the first quarter and 65.5 in the fourth quarter of 2012. The current Index is at modestly above its long-term average level of 79.3.


CEOs expect a slight improvement in economic output over the next six months, with modest improvement in sales expectations and hiring. Yet, they planned to spend less on capital projects in the next six months.


The Roundtable surveyed 141 CEOs from May 13 through May 31 and any reading above 50 indicated economic growth was expected.


The percentages in some categories may not equal 100 due to rounding.


CEO expectations for the U.S. economy increased for the second time in five quarters. They assessed the GDP would grow at a 2.2. annual rate in this survey, up from 2.1 percent expect growth in last quarter’s survey. Nevertheless, CEOs believe that political uncertainties are still a drag:


“Overall, CEOs see the U.S. economy still on a slow road to recovery. Relative to economic conditions, business performance remains strong, but the U.S. government’s unresolved long-term fiscal path and an uncertain political environment are key obstacles to more robust economic growth and hiring.”