Colorado business leaders’ confidence wanes slightly going into third quarter, says CU Leeds School Index

July 1, 2011

Colorado business leaders remained confident, although generally less optimistic about the economy looking ahead to the third quarter, according to the most recent quarterly Leeds Business Confidence Index, or LBCI, released by the University of Colorado Boulder’s Leeds School of Business.

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July 1, 2011                                                                  

Colorado business leaders remained confident, although generally less optimistic about the economy looking ahead to the third quarter, according to the most recent quarterly Leeds Business Confidence Index, or LBCI, released by the University of Colorado Boulder’s Leeds School of Business.

For the third quarter of 2011, the LBCI posted a reading of 51.6, down from 56.8 in the second quarter. Confidence waned across all metrics, although most indices remained above the neutral mark of 50.

Expectations for the national economy were once again especially bleak, falling back below neutral after two consecutive quarters of optimism, according to Leeds School economist and Business Research Division Director Richard Wobbekind, who conducts the quarterly survey.

CUT 1 “The overall economy has been damaged by uncertainty -- the uncertainty of consumers about the strength of the recovery and the strength of the job market, the uncertainty of businesses about demand for their products -- and I think that uncertainty has worked its way through on our index and other national indexes.” (:24)

He says Colorado has also dropped in the confidence index but not as much as the nation and still remains in a growth pattern.

CUT 2 “We are currently out of the recession and have been out of the recession. What it is showing is above 50 readings or the expansion of the Colorado economy for yet another quarter but also an anticipation of slowing of the growth rate. (:15) In terms of employment numbers for the state they have turned positive for the state year over year since the later part of last year. So at this rate we look like we are going to add growth to employment over the next year.” (:29)

Wobbekind says unemployment remain high across the nation and in Colorado because of two factors.

CUT 3 ”But I think that there is a large pool of labor in Colorado and nationally that is under utilized – people working less than full-time. A lot of those people would prefer to work more hours per week and as things have picked up businesses are giving those people more hours of work as opposed to going out and hiring a new person. (:22) So you have a higher utilization of existing workers as opposed to hiring new workers. And you’re also still seeing a strong tendency to hire fewer people and to invest more in machinery or capitol equipment.” (:37)

 

-CU-

 

 

 

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