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CEO poll: Fewer workers, more sales on many top execs' near-term agenda

Nearly one-third of top executives at the nation's largest companies expect to cut jobs during the next six months, according to the Business Roundtable's latest CEO survey.

Thirty-one percent of the respondents said their company's workforce would decrease over the next six months compared with 22 percent of the respondents in the previous survey released in April. Twenty-eight percent of the polled CEOs expected to increase employment while 42 percent anticipated their workforce to remain unchanged.

The survey also shows a majority of top execs (68 percent) expected their company's sales to increase during the next six months, while 23 percent believed sales would remain unchanged and 9 percent said sales would decrease.

In addition, the poll shows 33 percent of the respondents expected to boost capital spending over the next six months, 15 percent said they'd spend less and 52 percent said spending wouldn't change.

An association of CEOs at leading corporations, the Business Roundtable has conducted a "CEO Economic Outlook Survey" quarterly since fourth-quarter 2002. Conducted between May 22 and June 9, the latest poll solicited responses from 110 of the roundtable's 160 CEO members.

Meanwhile, the Business Roundtable also announced its latest "CEO Economic Outlook Index" shows a majority of member CEOs anticipate U.S. Gross Domestic Product growth of 1.3 percent, down from 1.5 percent in the first-quarter outlook.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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