CEO Economic Outlook Improves Slightly in Q3 as Covid-19 Pandemic Continues

The Business Roundtable CEO Economic Outlook reflects an improvement in the economy since the contraction at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic. However, chief executive officer plans remain fragile and recovery requires more support to be sustained and accelerated.

Despite an index increase from 29.7 points in Q2 to 64.0 in the third quarter, CEOs projected a 2.4% contraction for the year, an improvement from the 3.8% contraction projected in the Q2 survey.   While CEO plans for hiring increased, they remain significantly below the historical average.

When polled regarding when business conditions will recover to pre-Covid-19 levels, nearly a quarter of CEOs said that business conditions never declined, have recovered, or will likely recover by the end of the year.  However, Forty percent said they expect business conditions to recover in 2021, and 36% said they expect business conditions to recover in 2022 or later.