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CEO Confidence Increases, The Conference Board Reports

NEW YORK, Jan. 7, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Conference Board Measure of CEO Confidence™, which decreased in the third quarter, improved in the fourth quarter. The Measure now reads 46, up from 42 in the third quarter (a reading of more than 50 points reflects more positive than negative responses). 

Says Lynn Franco, Director of Economic Indicators at The Conference Board: "CEO Confidence improved in the final quarter of 2012, despite the cloud of fiscal uncertainty. However, CEO sentiment remains pessimistic by historical standards. Regarding inflation expectations for 2013, CEOs expect moderate price increases."

CEOs' assessment of current economic conditions has grown slightly more favorable, with 15 percent claiming conditions have improved compared to six months ago, up from 9 percent last quarter. About 13 percent of business leaders say conditions in their own industries have improved, compared with 14  percent in the third quarter of 2012.

CEOs' short-term outlook is also more upbeat than last quarter. Currently, 23 percent of business leaders expect economic conditions to improve over the next six months, up from 12 percent last quarter. Expectations for their own industries are also more optimistic, with 19 percent of CEOs anticipating an improvement in conditions in the months ahead, up from 15 percent in the third quarter. 

Inflation Outlook: Moderate Price Increases Anticipated in 2013
The majority of chief executives expect changes in their firms' selling prices in 2013. However, only 6 percent anticipate price increases in excess of 10 percent and 30 percent expect no changes at all.  On average, firms plan to increase prices by 1.5 percent, less than last year's expectation of 1.8 percent.

Survey results were fielded from mid-November to mid-December
Source: CEO Confidence 4th Quarter 2012
The Conference Board

The Conference Board is a global, independent business membershipand research association working in the public interest. Our mission is unique: To provide the world's leading organizationswith the practical knowledge they need to improve their performance and better serve society. The Conference Board is a non-advocacy, not-for-profit entity holding 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status in the United States.

SOURCE The Conference Board

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