CEO survey taken before omicron emergence shows optimism about the economy over the next 6 months

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  • Strong consumer demand sparked a wave of CEO optimism about the economy over the next six months, the business roundtable said, as it revealed the results of its most recent survey.
  • CEO expectations for increased hiring, sales and capital investment jumped from BRT’s previous survey.
  • But the lobbying group, whose members are CEOs of major US companies, cautioned that the survey was completed before the new Omicron COVID version emerged.

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Strong consumer demand sparked a wave of CEO optimism about the economy over the next six months, the business roundtable said on Wednesday, as it revealed the results of its most recent survey.

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But the lobbying group, whose members are CEOs of major US companies, cautioned that the survey was completed before the new Omicron COVID version emerged, and the survey only measured executives’ plans for the next six months.

The Business Roundtable released its fourth-quarter CEO Economic Outlook survey, revealing that its headline index had reached its highest level in the survey’s 20-year history, reaching a value of 124, a drop in the third quarter. 10 points above.

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On top of this, the CEO reported that there was a 13 point increase in his hiring plans, a 7 point increase in capital investment plans and a 9 point increase in sales expectations. The group cited the release of heavy-handed consumer demand as a driver of optimism in the corporate boardroom.

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“This quarter’s survey reflects the encouraging signs we’re seeing with the economic rebound as consumers resume travel and spending,” said Doug McMillan, chairman of Business Roundtable, Walmart CEO. “Continuous progress in defeating the pandemic, including new forms, will be essential to sustaining strong growth in the second half of 2022.”

In his first estimate of 2022 US GDP growth, the CEO forecast a growth of 3.9% for the year.

The Business Roundtable survey also asked CEOs about the cost pressures facing their companies. Forty-eight percent identified labor costs as the top cost pressure, followed by 20% identified supply chain disruption costs and 17% identified material costs.

Business Roundtable CEO Josh Bolton saw the recent legislation on Capitol Hill as one of the reasons for executives’ economic optimism.

“The recent bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which directs much-needed resources to upgrade our nation’s physical infrastructure and broadband connectivity, is a significant investment in the long-term health of the economy,” he said. “As the economy returns to a normal pace, sound economic policy can help sustain strong growth over the long term.”

The survey was conducted between November 3 and November 22. The World Health Organization labeled Omicron “a type of anxiety disorder” on 26 November.

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