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CEO report finds top execs moderately pessimistic in Q2

July 09, 2019

CEOs remain moderately pessimistic in the second quarter, according to The Conference Board’s Measure of CEO Confidence. Its level for the second quarter was 43, unchanged from the first; readings above 50 indicate more positive than negative responses.

“CEO confidence was unchanged in Q2, and remains at a moderately pessimistic level,” said Lynn Franco, senior director of economic indicators at The Conference Board. “CEOs’ expectations for growth prospects in mature and emerging economies remain subdued, with no pickup anticipated in the short-term. CEOs’ profit expectations have weakened compared to last year, with trade and tariff uncertainties and signs of a slowing global economy the likely causes of the deterioration.”

The CEO confidence measure is based on a survey of global CEOs that took place from mid-May to mid-June.

For the second quarter, 13% of global CEOs said conditions are better than six months ago; that’s down from 14% who said the same in the first quarter’s survey. However, only 42% said conditions are worse in the second quarter compared with 46% who said the same in the first quarter.

Only 13% of CEOs believe economic conditions will improve in the next six months, down from the first quarter when 14% said the same.

Also looking forward, 44% of CEOs expect economic conditions to worsen in the next six months.

“CEOs’ assessment of current global conditions remains negative,” according to The Conference Board. “Sentiment about current conditions declined further for the US. Europe and China saw an uptick, but overall, sentiment was still very downbeat. Sentiment for Japan and Brazil remained relatively neutral for both countries, though Japan saw an uptick. Sentiment regarding current conditions in India improved and were the most favorable.”

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