August 2016: The Larger the Company, the Deeper the Concern

They have the most to lose if new tax-related legislation is enacted. And they have the most number of employees should the minimum wage be raised. They also may be concerned that the Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, might beat out business-friendly Donald Trump in the presidential election.

In Chief Executive’s August 2016 CEO Confidence Index, CEOs rated their expectations of future business conditions (12 months from now) on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest. While the overall rating was flat against last month (5.70 vs. 5.69), significant differences appear when broken out by company size.

Large companies, on average, rated their view of future business conditions a 5.38, compared with upper mid-marketers which came in the highest at 5.82.Lower mid-marketers and small companies ranked similarly, with a 5.70 and 5.65, respectively.

When broken out by industry, the Government/Nonprofit industry was the most optimistic, with a 7.50 rating, followed by Energy/Utilities at 6.67. Industries with the lowest ratings included Transportation at 4.50 and Real Estate at 4.75. Comparing future business conditions to now, CEOs in the Government/Nonprofit sector projected the highest improvement, with a 15.4% jump (6.50 to 7.50), followed by Manufacturers of Industrial Goods with a 9.7% projected growth rate (4.95 to 5.43).

August 2016 chart
Large = >$1B Upper Mid-Market = $100M-$999.9M Lower Mid-Market = $10M-$99.9M Small = <$10M

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