Sept. 11 Causes Multinationals To Reduce Growth Estimates

By John S. McClenahen A PricewaterhouseCoopers survey of 157 CFOs and managing directors in major multinational businesses shows that at the close of this year's third calendar quarter the executives had cut their composite revenue growth estimate for the next 12 months to 6.4%, a 15% decline from the 7.5% they projected in the second quarter, before the attacks on New York and Washington. Not surprisingly, the executives also were less optimistic about the short-term prospects for the U.S. economy, indicates the latest PricewaterhouseCoopers' Management Barometer. At the end of September, only 23% were optimistic about the economy over the next 12 months, compared with 42% during 2001's second quarter. As for major new capital investments, at the end of September 38% of the executives surveyed said they expected to make them during the next 12 months, a four-percentage-point decline from the 42% who had such plans in this year's April-to-June quarter. Their anticipated level of spending slipped to 7.8% of revenue from a previously anticipated 9%.

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