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Nearly 30% of top CEOs do not expect their businesses to recover until after 2021

Nearly 30% of top CEOs do not expect their businesses to recover until after 2021

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  • As many as 27% of CEOs said that they do not expect their businesses to recover to pre-coronavirus levels until after 2021, according to the Business Roundtable’s Economic Outlook released Monday. 
  • The rest of the top CEOs expect to recover to pre-coronavirus levels by the end of 2021. 
  • A composite index measuring plans for spending, hiring, and sales expectations over the next six months also fell to 34.3 in the second quarter from 72.7 in the first three months of the year. 
  • Read more on Business Insider.

Nearly one-third of top CEOs do not expect that business will recover from the shock of the coronavirus pandemic until after 2021, according to a recent report from the Business Roundtable, a trade group whose members include CEOs of Apple, Walmart, GM, and more. 

In the group’s second quarter economic outlook released Monday, 27% of CEOs said that they do not expect recovery for their businesses to pre-coronavirus levels until after 2021. The rest of the top CEOs said that they expect to recover by the end of 2021. 

“Our battle against COVID-19 is far from over, and our top priority remains the health and safety of our employees, customers and communities we serve,” Doug McMillon, chairman and CEO of Walmart and chairman of Business Roundtable, said in a statement. 

The survey, which was conducted between June 1 and 22, underscores the uncertainty that businesses face as the US economy reopens from coronavirus lockdowns while grappling with climbing case numbers. While many states have continued to go forward with reopening efforts, some such as Florida and Texas have rolled back their plans following spikes in COVID-19 cases. 

Read more: The stock market’s fear gauge is sending a persistent warning that has a 30-year track record of signaling meltdowns ahead

In some cases, CEOs have moved faster than local governments to protect employees and potential customers. Apple, for example, in mid-June closed stores that had been recently reopened due to recent spikes of coronavirus. 

The Business Roundtable’s CEO Economic Outlook, a composite index of plans for spending, hiring, and sales expectations over the next six months, also fell to 34.3 in the second quarter from 72.7 in the first three months of the year. 

It’s the indexes lowest reading since its all-time low of -5 in the first quarter of 2009. 

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The reading reflects the disruptions to businesses due to the coronavirus pandemic including lockdowns to contain the disease in March and April. In February, the National Bureau of Economic Research officially declared the US in recession.

Going forward, the Business Roundtable will continue to “urge lawmakers at the federal, state and local levels to coordinate as much as possible to control further spread of this virus,” McMillon said. In May, the group wrote a letter to House and Senate leadership supporting a “back to work” bonus.

 “We appreciate the actions taken by the Administration and Congress so far to help American workers, small businesses and communities, but there is much more to do,” said Joshua Bolten, president and CEO of Business Roundtable.

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