clear
Tuesday August 4th, 2015 6:01PM

CEOs more optimistic about economy and hiring

By The Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) -- A survey of chief executives at the largest U.S. companies shows a growing number are slightly more optimistic about the economy's prospects for the next six months and expect to boost hiring.

The Business Roundtable said Wednesday that its index measuring CEO outlook rose to 84.5 in the October-December quarter. That's up from 79.1 in the July-September quarter.

The group is an association of chief executives at the 200 largest U.S. companies. Any reading above 50 suggests expansion.

The survey noted that 34 percent of the executives expect their companies will increase hiring in the next six months, up from 32 percent in the previous survey. And 73 percent of those surveyed expect their company's sales to increase, up from 71 percent in previous survey.

Still, the CEOs expect the economy will grow at a subpar 2.2 percent next year, unchanged from the previous two surveys' forecasts.

"Our expectations are consistent with an economy that will continue along the path of steady, modest recovery into the first half of 2014," said Jim McNerney, chief executive of aircraft maker Boeing Co. and the chairman of the group, in a statement.

During a conference call with reporters, McNerney said many business executives are concerned about the impact of President Barack Obama's health care law on their companies' costs. Some companies are responding by "hedging" their hiring and their investments in the businesses, he said.

The job market has shown improvement in recent months.

The economy added 204,000 jobs in October, suggesting employers shrugged off the 16-day partial government shutdown.

And employers have added an average of 202,000 jobs a month from August through October. That was up from an average of 146,000 from May through June.

The government reports Friday on November employment.

Growth has also picked up since the last survey. The economy grew at a 2.8 percent annual pace from July through September, up from a 2.5 percent pace in the April-June quarter.

But much of the third-quarter growth was fueled by restocking, which can be volatile. Many economists predict that growth has slowed to 2 percent pace in the current October-December quarter.

The Business Roundtable CEO survey results are based on 120 responses received between Nov. 4 and 21.

The latest reading of 84.5 is above the index's long-term average of 79.2. The survey has been conducted for 11 years.
© Copyright 2015 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
S&P 500 index has its best year since 1997
The stock market closed out a record year with more all-time highs on Tuesday, giving U.S. indexes their biggest annual gains in almost two decades.
6:56PM ( 1 year ago )
Colorado readies for 'Green Wednesday' pot sales
Police were adding extra patrols around pot shops in eight Colorado towns that plan to allow recreational sales to anyone over 21 on Jan. 1.
1:52PM ( 1 year ago )
Kerry seeks framework for Mideast peace talks
A senior State Department official says Secretary of State John Kerry will try this week to get Israel and the Palestinians to agree on a framework for negotiating a final peace agreement, yet cautions against raising expectations for Kerry's latest round of shuttle diplomacy.
1:35PM ( 1 year ago )
U.S. News
Missing Ga. bank director arrested in Brunswick
A bank director accused of losing millions of investors' dollars before vanishing last year was arrested Tuesday during a traffic stop in a city in south Georgia.
7:00PM ( 1 year ago )
Amtrak to suspend some Crescent service in Jan., Feb.
Amtrak service will shut down in parts of the Southeast for several days in January and February for rail maintenance by Norfolk Southern Railway.
9:00AM ( 1 year ago )
Lung cancer scans urged for some smokers, not all
Certain current or former heavy smokers should start getting yearly scans for lung cancer to cut their risk of death from the nation's top cancer killer, government advisers said Monday - even as they stressed that the tests aren't for everyone.
7:26AM ( 1 year ago )
Business News
Sex offender held in Hall County for failing to register
A 47-year-old man was booked into the Hall County Jail Tuesday, being held without bond for allegedly failing to register as a sex offender, his second such arrest.
6:09PM ( 1 year ago )
Pharmacy robberies may involve same suspect
Oakwood Police Tuesday afternoon released details in a pharmacy robbery they're investigating, similar to one that happened in the Hall County Tuesday morning.
5:46PM ( 1 year ago )
Victim critical following apartment fire
A 41-year-old woman was in critical but stable condition Tuesday after being rescued from an apartment fire in Forsyth County late Monday afternoon.
3:16PM ( 1 year ago )
Local/State News
Former Athens-Clarke Co officer arrested for aggravated assault, violation of oath
A former Athens-Clarke County Police Officer was arrested for aggravated assault and violation of oath by a public officer, both felonies.
5:31PM ( 30 minutes ago )
No charges in machete road rage incident in Hall Co.
No charges will be filed in a Hall County road rage incident on Athens Highway.
5:07PM ( 54 minutes ago )
Helen officials reach consensus on Riverside Park
The Helen City Commission took a field trip of sorts during its meeting Tuesday.
4:28PM ( 1 hour ago )
Alabama man dies following crash at Road Atlanta
Hall County authorities said an Alabama man died at an area hospital following a high-speed crash at the Road Atlanta race facility Saturday afternoon.
1:40PM ( 4 hours ago )
WalletHub: Ga students among worst for student loan debt
A new study puts Georgia college students among the worst in the country when it comes to the amount of student loan debt they've accrued.
By accessWDUN staff
1:06PM ( 4 hours ago )