Friday, October 15, 2010

CEOs Forecast Increased Sales, Capital Spending

CEOs in central Virginia have an optimistic view of business and the economy for the next six months, according to the 2010 CEO Economic Outlook Survey.

The area’s top executives anticipate an increase in sales and forecast an increase in capital spending, 3rd quarter survey results show.

The Virginia Council of CEOs and University of Richmond’s Robins School of Business jointly conduct the quarterly economic outlook survey, which helps central Virginia companies plan for growth. Additional findings reveal that only 8% of CEOs surveyed expect to reduce employment.

“These findings echo what I have been hearing from Richmond area CEOs. They are moving out of a period of risk-avoidance and into a time of opportunity,” said Scot McRoberts, executive director of the Virginia Council of CEOs. “Small and mid-sized businesses will bounce back faster because they are nimble.  However, many are constrained by the difficulty of obtaining financing for growth.”

The results from last month’s 3rd quarter survey and the 2nd quarter survey show CEOs’ sales, spending and employment projections for the next six months.

2010 Q3 2010 Q2
Increase No


Decrease Increase No


How do you expect your company’s sales to change in the next six months? 72.0% 18.7% 9.3% 54.4% 38.9% 6.7%
How do you expect your company’s U.S. capital spending to change in the next six months? 46.7% 33.3% 20.0% 35.6% 42.2% 22.2%
How do you expect your company’s U.S. employment to change in the next six months? 52.0% 40.0% 8.0% 41.1% 52.2% 6.7%

The council and Robins School surveyed 73 area business owners and CEOs of companies with more than $1 million revenue in central Virginia. Results were calculated by Jeff Pollack, assistant professor of management at the Robins School, who adapted the survey from the Business Roundtable. The economic index is based on businesses’ projected six-month sales, spending and employment figures.

Economic Outlook Index

Survey Date CEO Economic Outlook Index
2010 Q3 94.47
2010 Q2 81.33

“We are excited about these data. If the trend upward in the CEO Economic Outlook Index continues, it could represent positive economic news for the Richmond area and surrounding region,” said Pollack.

Business owners and CEOs who would like to participate in the next survey should contact McRoberts at

Posted by Scot McRoberts at 12:31 pm
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