Report: Economic Conditions Improving, Stronger U.S. GDP Growth Expected
Apr 23, 2012
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National Association for Business Economics members generally see improving in economic conditions, with higher sales and rising profit margins, continued optimism about real GDP growth, and continued price stability, according to the April 2012 NABE Industry Survey report.

"About 60% of NABE panelists reported rising sales and 40% reported rising profit margins in the April survey, which is a much higher share of panelists than in the January 2012 survey," said Dr. Nayantara Hensel, Professor of Industry and Business at National Defense University. "Almost two-thirds of the panelists forecast that real GDP will grow between 2.1% and 3% from the fourth quarter of 2011 to the fourth quarter of 2012, which continues the trend in optimism seen in the January survey."

In fact, he added, 15% of panelists see real GDP growth exceeding 3%, up from 5% in January.

"NABE panelists are not significantly concerned about the potential impact of higher oil prices or the European crisis on their business." Hensel added. "Only 11% of NABE panelists expect the maximum price for West Texas Intermediate crude oil will exceed $130 over the next six months. Over 70% of panelists have reported no impact of the European crisis on their sales and expect little impact over the next six months."

The April 2012 survey does suggest the possibility of moderate upward pressure on primary, non-labor input prices in the next three months. It also finds stronger evidence of rising wages than prior surveys. More panelists - 44% - reported in the April 2012 survey that wages and salaries are rising, relative to the previous four surveys. A lower share reported that wages and salaries are unchanged - 48%.

The report is based on the responses of 55 NABE members, surveyed from March 20 to April 10, 2012.

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