Higher confidence, good actuals
Deloitte Belgian CFO Survey Q3-2010
Financial optimism dipped slightly in the third quarter but overall remains strong.
This positive Belgian trend is in sharp contrast with the situation in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands 1: the Deloitte UK CFO surveys marks a sharp decline in financial optimism since the beginning of the year.
These different perceptions in Belgian and the UK translate into very different expectations for the pattern of the recovery of the economy as well. Belgian CFOs almost unanimously expect sluggish but albeit sustained recovery of the economy. In the UK this quarter, CFOs attach on average a probability of 34% to a double dip, by which we mean several months of contracting growth.
Belgian cash flow expectations remain constant compared to last quarter. 60% of the CFOs expect an increase in cash flow over the next 12 months, while the proportion of CFOs expecting decling cash flows continues to shrink quarter by quarter.
This quarter’s positive news is not limited to future expectations only. Three quarters into 2010, more than 80% of CFOs report the actual financial results of their organizations are on budget. As in the previous quarter, somewhat more as 40% of CFOs report having outperformed their company budgets.
Also - for the first time since the launch of the survey - the expectations about the timing of accelerated growth in demand have not shifted further backwards. One third of the CFOs have witnessed accelerated demand for their products and services in 2010 already.
CFO optimism is well aligned with the overall synthetic curve. The economic trend had a serious dip in 2009, although it recovers steep in 2009 and continues with a slow growth in 2010. Despite the continued increase, we aren’t still on the pre-recession level.