CEO Confidence Takes Q4 Nosedive

  • January 16, 2009
The Conference Board Measure of CEO Confidence, which had posted a slight increase in the third quarter, declined sharply in the fourth quarter of 2008. The measure currently stands at 24, down from 40 in the third quarter (a reading of more than 50 points reflects more positive than negative responses), per the board. The survey includes about 100 business leaders in a wide range of industries.

CEO Confidence is at the lowest level ever recorded since the survey was first conducted in the second quarter of 1976. And, this is only the second time the measure has fallen below 30. The last time was during the second quarter of 1980, when it stood at 29.

Looking ahead six months, the outlook remains negative. Currently, about 11% of business leaders expect economic conditions to improve in the next six months, down from approximately 20% last quarter. Expectations for their own industries were also pessimistic. Only 12% of CEOs anticipate an improvement in the months ahead, down from 17% last quarter.--Nina Lentini



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