VBR and EPR Release 4Qtr2017 and 1Qtr2018 Business Conditions Survey Results (Mar. 2018)
Lisa Ventriss, President of Vermont Business Roundtable (VBR) and Jeffrey Carr, President, Economic & Policy Resources (EPR), announced the Q4 2017 outlook results of their joint initiative, the VBR/EPR Business Conditions Survey and Index. A supermajority of respondents (69%) shared negative outlooks specifically with ease of hiring for available positions, a decline from the previous survey (63%). The information sector again had the most optimistic outlook on the general business climate (100% optimistic), while the education sector again had the least optimistic, but improving outlook (50% pessimistic, 25% neutral, 25% optimistic). This is the third quarter in a row that the information sector led in optimism about the general business climate.
Mr. Carr of EPR stated that “We seem to be seeing the first signs that the higher levels of business confidence on the national level are working their way back to business leaders in Vermont. With the near-term outlook for the U.S. and global economies strengthening, we would expect to see at least a small increase in optimism for the Vermont economy as well.” While the index remains in the “neutral to mild optimism” range, the slight uptick in optimism is encouraging for the overall economic outlook in the state. Vermont’s outlook appears to remain on a “neutral” trend, with a slight positive uptick. Given the responses from this and the previous survey, and continues to demonstrate that economic conditions overall remain somewhat uncertain in many areas of the State and sectors of Vermont economy.