Latest CFO Outlook: Gloomy

by Erin McCune on March 14, 2008

in Economic Outlook, Research Round Up

CFO Magazine and Duke University recently concluded their latest quarterly Global Business Outlook survey of more than 1,000 CFOs of private and public companies worldwide. The global CFOs anticipate that inflation will rise to 3% this year and nearly 90% believe the economy will not rebound until 2009.

Here are the "lowlights" from

  • Fifty-four percent say the United States is now in recession.
  • Optimism reached its lowest point since the study launched its optimism index six years ago. Pessimists outnumber optimists by a
    nine-to-one margin, with 72 percent of finance chiefs more pessimistic
    than about the U.S. economy they were last quarter. Just 8 percent more
  • Weak consumer demand and turmoil in the credit and housing markets
    are the top macro-concerns of top finance executives. The high cost of
    labor ranked as the top internal concern.
  • Credit conditions have directly hurt 35 percent of companies
    through decreased availability of credit and higher interest rates (up
    118 basis points on average). Sixty percent of the companies have put
    off expansion plans in response to credit market unrest.
  • The CFOs expect capital spending to increase only 3.3 percent, while price inflation  rises 3 percent over the next 12 months.
  • Only 13 percent think the U.S. economy will hit bottom and begin
    to rebound in 2008. Another 40 percent say the rebound will occur in
    the first half of 2009, while 47 percent feel recovery is more than 15
    months off.

Darkness Visible: CFOs See Recession Through 2009
David M. Katz | US
March 12, 2008

Detailed results here.

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