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Expanding U.S. GDP - 3/26/15

Chief executive officers in the U.S. remain upbeat regarding near-term economic prospects according to the first quarter survey conducted by the Business Roundtable and recently featured in the New York Times.  CEO's expect U.S. gross domestic product to expand by two point eight percent this year compared to a less optimist projection of two point four percent a quarter earlier. 

Of the one hundred and twenty CEOs who responded to the survey, forty five percent expect to boost U.S. capital spending over the next six months, up from thirty six percent in the fourth quarter survey.  That’s important because higher capital spending implies more hiring as well.  Moreover, much of America’s economic growth is presently being driven by increased consumer spending. 

For the economy to expand at around three percent this year and sustain momentum, business spending must also expand.  The Business Roundtable CEO Economic Outlook Index, a composite index of expectations for the next six months for capital spending, employment and sale, rose to nearly ninety one during the first quarter, up from eighty five during last year’s final quarter. 

Anirban Basu, Chariman Chief Executive Officer of Sage Policy Group (SPG), is one of the Mid-Atlantic region's leading economic consultants. Prior to founding SPG he was Chairman and CEO of Optimal Solutions Group, a company he co-founded and which continues to operate. Anirban has also served as Director of Applied Economics and Senior Economist for RESI, where he used his extensive knowledge of the Mid-Atlantic region to support numerous clients in their strategic decision-making processes. Clients have included the Maryland Department of Transportation, St. Paul Companies, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Players Committee and the Martin O'Malley mayoral campaign.