Business Leaders Up Beat on Economy
March 14, 2017
CEOs’ plans for
hiring and investment and expectations for sales over the next six
months jumped sharply, according to the Business Roundtable first
quarter 2017 CEO Economic Outlook Survey.
CEO plans for hiring increased by 18 points from the previous quarter,
while expectations for sales and capital expenditures increased by 21
and 18.4 points, respectively, over the previous quarter.
“I am enthusiastic about the opportunity to enact a meaningful pro
growth agenda that will benefit all Americans. As these results confirm,
business confidence and optimism have increased dramatically,” said
Jamie Dimon, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of JPMorgan Chase &
Co. and Chairman of Business Roundtable.
The survey’s key findings from this quarter and the fourth quarter of 2016 include:
First Quarter 2017 Business Roundtable CEO Economic Outlook Index
The Business Roundtable CEO Economic Outlook Index — a composite index of CEO plans for the next six months of sales, capital spending and employment — increased from 74.2 in the fourth quarter of 2016 to 93.3 in the first quarter of 2017. The long-term average of the Index is 79.8.
About the Business Roundtable CEO Economic Outlook Survey
The survey is designed to provide a picture of the future direction of the U.S. economy by asking CEOs to report their plans for their company’s sales, capex and employment in the next six months. The data are used to create the Business Roundtable CEO Economic Outlook Index and sub-indices for sales, capex and hiring expectations. All of these indices are diffusion indices that range between -50 and 150 — where readings at 50 or above indicate an economic expansion, and readings below 50 indicate an economic contraction. A diffusion index is defined as the percentage of respondents who report that a measure will increase, minus the percentage who report that the measure will decrease.
The first quarter 2017 survey was conducted between February 8 and March 1, 2017. Responses were received from 141 member CEOs