PricewaterhouseCoopers' Trendsetter Barometer, a survey of 255 CEOs of privately held U.S. businesses, finds that executives surveyed highly anticipate an economic recovery for the next 12 months. Fifty-one percent of respondents said they were optimistic about domestic economic prospects, while only 11 percent said they were pessimistic.
The executives' responses indicate that economic forecasts both domestically and internationally are improving, and that hiring will pick up again. Executives expected higher prospective revenue growth for their companies over the next 12 months. Thirty-eight percent projected double-digit revenue growth, while only 5 percent expected negative growth. Along with expected gains, executives plan to spend more on operational costs, including new product and service introductions, information technology, and marketing and sales promotion.
These findings may also indicate a boost for the job market. Fifty-three percent of executives surveyed planned to hire over the next 12 months, while only 4 percent planned to lay off workers. But nearly three-quarters of respondents said lack of demand presents the biggest challenge to economic growth.