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Survey shows dip in business leaders' confidence in the economy

Colorado business leaders’ confidence slipped into negative territory ahead of the fourth quarter of 2019


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Illustration by Drew Thurston.

Colorado business leaders’ confidence slipped into negative territory ahead of the fourth quarter of 2019, according to the University of Colorado’s Leeds Business Confidence Index. It was the first pessimistic outlook recorded by the survey since the second quarter of 2011 and the lowest index value since the end of the recession. These sentiments coincide with ongoing trade tensions, an additional interest rate cut and increased political strain in the Middle East. The most commonly cited reasons by survey responses for the pessimism included trade, politics, the economy and uncertainty.

Produced by the University of Colorado’s Leeds School of Business Research Division, the Leeds Business Confidence Index captures Colorado business leaders’ expectations for the national economy, state economy, industry sales, profits, hiring plans and capital expenditures. Ahead of the fourth quarter of 2019, the index decreased to 46.9, with most components of the index falling below neutral (50). Looking further out to the first quarter of 2020, the index sank further, dropping to 44. A total of 263 qualified panelists responded to the survey from Aug. 30 through Sept. 20.

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