Executive perspectives on 2021

Infographic: When do CEOs and other business leaders expect an economic recovery?

1612455701822 - Executive perspectives on 2021

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Executive Perspectives on 2021Recently surveyed CEOs and other business leaders are forecasting a relatively swift post-pandemic recovering - but some things may never be the same.

In the next 12 months, the economy will:

  • Improve - 44%
  • Stay the same - 33%
  • Decline - 24%
83% say another federal COVID-19 economic relief package would spur economic growth and 77% believe infrastructure spending would boost the economy.

Their companies will return to pre-pandemic business conditions:

  • In 2021 - 41%
  • In 2022 - 27%
  • In 2023 - 6%
  • 26% said that their conditions are unchanged/already recovered

Economists expect GDP to return to pre-pandemic levels in the:

  • 2nd half 2021 - 73%
  • 1st half of 2022 - 18%
  • 2nd half of 2022 or later - 10%
They expect unemployment to fall to 6% (from current 6.7%) by Q4 2021.

Expected long-term consequences of COVID-19:

  • Smaller officer/workspace - 79%
  • Reduced business travel - 78%
  • Increased task automation - 75%
  • Want to maintain new ways of working (including remote work) - 58%

Current areas of strategic focus:

  1. Accelerate pace of digital transformation
  2. Improve innovation
  3. Lower costs
  4. Streamline processes
  5. Pursue M&As and divestitures
*Due to rounding, survey results may add up to more than 100%Sources: The Conference Board, C-Suite Challenge 2021; National Association of Economics, Outlook Survey; Employer Association of America, 2021 National Business Trends Survey; Bankrate, Fourth-Quarter Economic Indicator Survey; Business Roundtable, CEO Economic Outlook Index; ServiceNow, The Work Survey.