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Mid-Market Manufacturing CEOs Bullish on Fourth Quarter Growth

Chief Executive Network survey reports revenue and profit growth

Good news from manufacturing CEOs according to a recent survey by Chief Executive Network (CEN), an industry sector organization for CEOs and senior executives. "Interestingly, our manufacturing/distribution sector forecast was more bullish than the service sector forecast," says Bob Grabill, President and CEO of Chief Executive Networks.

"Although the variances between the two sectors were not terribly significant for the remainder of this year, in 2008 the sectors begin to separate more," Grabill stated. "In fact, manufacturing/ distribution companies are more optimistic on revenue growth by 1.8% (8.5% from 6.7%) and profit growth by 6.3% (12.9% versus 6.6%), than the service sector when comparing 2008 expectations over 2007."

The survey of over 350 companies covering a broad cross-section of the industrial and service sectors was taken to determine how mid market (non Fortune 500) and smaller companies see their near term business prospects.

CEN polled its membership on the percent of change in relationship to revenues, profits, and hiring for two time frames. The first time frame was Q4 in relationship to Q3 for 2007 with the second time frame comparing 2008 to 2007.

Overall findings from the survey include:

  • 2007 Q4 revenues up 4.8% and profits (EBITDA) up 6.8% over Q3
  • 2007 Q4 hiring increase 3.7% over Q3
  • 2008 revenues estimated to increase 7.8% over 2007
  • 2008 profits (EBITDA) estimated to increase 10.4% over 2007
  • 2008 hiring is expected to increase 5.2% over 2007

"It is clear from this survey that the small and mid-size companies (non financial sector) continue to be optimistic regarding the future of the overall business economy growth," Grabill concluded.

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