Survey: Business Confidence Stalled
Connecticut’s economy remains in a holding pattern, according to the results of a new survey released today.
CBIA’s second quarter economic survey found continued ambivalence about the economy, with 42% of respondents expecting conditions to remain the same (down from 52% at the end of last year) and 14% forecasting improvement (up two percentage points).
However, 43% expect economic conditions in the state to worsen, compared with the 36% who felt that way at the end of 2013.
Expectations for the U.S. economy are a little rosier, with 30% expecting improvement (up four points), 45% seeing no change (down two points), and 25% pessimistic (compared with 26%).
“The numbers should be improving, but confidence among business leaders seems to be stalled,” says CBIA economist Pete Gioia. “And Connecticut’s economy continues to lag the nation and much of the Northeast.
“Clearly, more needs to be done to encourage growth and investment in Connecticut.”
About a third (34%) of businesses said their own firm’s outlook was positive (down four points), while 49% thought it would remain stable (up a point), and 16% saw their outlook worsening (up two points).
Those responses were close to expectations for their specific industries, with 29% forecasting improvement (up 5 percentage points), 54% seeing stability (down two points), and 17% having a negative outlook (down two points).
Costs, performance indicators
Half of those surveyed said wage costs would remain stable, 45% expected increases, and 5% anticipated decreases, with all numbers basically unchanged since the last survey.
However, 47% expect compensation and benefits costs to rise, while 45% said they would remain stable.
Sales, production, and workforce trends have held steady since the last survey:
- 39% of respondents expect increases in production and sales, while 19% predict decreases
- 24% plan to expand their workforce; 15% see it shrinking
- 37% of respondents generate sales from exports, remaining steady over last year
CBIA’s Quarterly Economic Survey: Second Quarter 2014 was emailed to over 3,100 Connecticut business leaders in July 2014. A total of 219 responded, for a 7% response rate and a margin of error of 6.8%.
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