Middle-market chief financial officers believe the U.S. economy will remain healthy in 1999 and predict strong revenues to prevail, according to a recently released survey. Some 85% of those polled said they expect the economy to expand or stay the same, and 75% say their company's revenues will grow. This optimistic outlook reigns despite about half of the finance officers predicting per-unit labor cost increases, and 62% reporting that product prices are unlikely to increase in 1999. Sponsored by Fleet Capital Corp., Glastonbury, Conn., the study consisted of a telephone poll of 300 financial officers from a random sample of manufacturing companies with revenues from $25 million to $500 million. In other findings from the study:
- 60% of the companies that sell to foreign markets anticipate an increase in international sales.
- 21% of those surveyed expect to take part in a merger or acquisition in 1999.
- 75% of participants expect their cost of financing capital to stay the same or decrease.