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CFO Insights — Special Edition: Results from 2017 Q3 "CFO Signals" survey

Published on: Sep 21, 2017

CFO sentiment got off to a very strong start in the first quarter of 2017. In the aftermath of the U.S. presidential election, CFOs appeared very optimistic — with that quarter’s survey registering the sharpest uptick in sentiment in its seven-year history.

This sentiment largely continued in the second quarter. Despite voicing growing concerns about geopolitical conflict, U.S. political turmoil, and Washington’s ability to deliver clarity and change in key policy areas, CFOs’ optimism regarding their companies’ prospects remained largely intact.

For both quarters, CFOs’ confidence appeared significantly underpinned by positive assessments of the global economy, with continuing positive perceptions of North America and increasingly positive assessments of both Europe and China. Much of this sentiment carries over to this quarter, but something does appear to have changed — especially around CFOs’ confidence in the North American economy. Accordingly, CFOs’ perceptions of their own companies’ prospects declined, and year-over-year expectations for earnings and capital investment both declined.

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