Vistage CEO Confidence Index: Optimism Among Small Firms At Highest Level In 3 Years In Q1 2015

 

The quarterly Vistage Confidence Index is now available.CI-graph-q115-280

Confidence among CEOs has remained higher for a longer period than at any other time in the past ten years, according to a survey of 1,541 small- to mid-sized business owners. The survey, which took place from March 9 to March 18, 2015, provides a clear snapshot of current economic, market and industry trends.

The Vistage Confidence Index was 105.8 in the 1st quarter of 2015, between the 107.5 in the 4th quarter and 101.3 in the 1st quarter of 2014. The recent survey represented the eighth consecutive year-to-year increase, a new record for the persistence of optimism. The small 1st quarter loss involved all components, although none registered a significant decline. The stability in CEOs’ confidence stands in sharp contrast to the slowdown in the pace of economic growth at year-end, which has persisted into the 1st quarter of 2015.

Below are some key highlights from the Q1 2015 Vistage CEO Confidence Index (all members surveyed):

  • 61% of CEOs said the economy has improved in the past year – the third highest level
    since the start of 2005.
  • 45% of CEOs expect the economy to improve in the next year, well above last year’s 37%.
  • 36% of CEOs said that locating, hiring, training, and retaining staff was the most significant
    business issue they are currently facing.
  • 48% of CEOs plan to increase investments in new plant and equipment, and CEOs expressed
    the most expansive investment plans during the past four quarters that any other time since 2006.
  • 77% of CEOs expect their revenues to increase in the year ahead, unchanged from last
    quarter and above last year’s 74%.

Elisa K. Spain