First Business survey shows economic optimism

Economic indicators

Last updated on July 2nd, 2019 at 09:10 am

Despite some uncertainty in the global economic picture, southeastern Wisconsin business executives are projecting robust growth in 2016, according to the annual First Business Economic Survey.Economic indicators

The survey, completed by Altsech Consulting from late August to mid-October, included 391 owners and executives across four regions of Wisconsin, including Greater Milwaukee.

Broken down to just the 104 Milwaukee-area respondents, a record-tying 72 percent saw sales increase in 2015, and 79 percent project a sales increase in 2016.

Just 7 percent of Milwaukee-area leaders expect sales to dip in 2016, is a historic low for the survey, which began in 2008.

About 58 percent of Milwaukee respondents saw profits increase in 2015, and just 20 percent saw profitability decline this year, the lowest recorded by the survey.

For 2016, 8 percent of executives predict a decrease in profits, and just 5 percent expect a drop in employment.

About 48 percent of companies reported an increase in employment in 2015, and the same percentage expects an increase in employment in 2016.

A large portion, 70 percent, of respondents predict better performance in 2016, while only 10 percent expect a decline.

The First Business survey was released this morning at the Waukesha County Business Alliance’s annual event, Key Industries for Wisconsin in 2016 and Beyond. BizTimes Media was a sponsor of the event. View a photo gallery of the event here.

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Molly Dill, former BizTimes Milwaukee managing editor.

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