The economic backdrop has improved since we closed the third quarter CFO survey in late September. Equity markets,US S&P 500, have rallied up 9%. Sentiments on the US economy have been boosted by the extension of the Bush administration’s tax cuts and by a new round of quantitative easing announced by the Federal Reserve. The outlook for emerging markets is generally seen as positive. In November the bailout of Ireland’s economy led globally to renewed fears of debt contagion and damage to Europe’s banking system. But Germany’s economy has powered ahead, with business confidence hitting fresh highs. In Belgium the Central Bank also reported further increases in business confidence, returning to fourth quarter 2007 levels.
Confidence remains high and appetite for risk increases
Not all survey questions are reported in each quarterly survey. In response to the current financial economic situation survey questions will be selected. In case you participated in the survey and would like to receive information about non-reported questions do not hesitate to contact us.
Some of the charts in the Deloitte CFO survey show the result in the form of a net % balance. This is the percentage of respondents reporting, for instance, that bank credit is attractive minus the percentage saying bank credit is unattractive. This is a standard way of presenting survey data.
The 2010 fourth quarter survey took place between 23th of december 2010 and 14th of january 2011. A total of 50 CFOs completed our survey. The participating CFOs are active in a variety of industries. 39% of the participating companies have a turnover of over 1 billion, 43% of between 100 million and 1 billion and 18% of less than 100 million.
We would like to thank all participating CFOs for their efforts in completing our survey. We hope the report makes an interesting read, clearly highlighting the challenges facing CFOs, and providing an important benchmark to understand how your organisation rates among peers.
Thierry Van Schoubroeck
Deloitte CFO Services, Partner
Tel. + 32 2 749 56 04