Business Leaders 1Q Economic Survey Results


DETROIT, Mich., April 28, 2010 – Business Leaders for Michigan’s first quarter of 70 of Michigan’s most prominent executives indicates that the Michigan economy should bottom-out during early 2011 – the same conclusion reached in the 4th quarter survey. However, the executives still forecast Michigan will lag the nation’s economic performance over the next eighteen months and, as a result, predict modest hiring gains. The executives represent a cross-section of industries across Michigan and are in a unique position to assess the direction of the economy.

Highlights of the survey include:

  • Approximately 20% forecast increased hiring in Michigan in the next 6 months. Over seventy percent forecast flat or lower capital investment in Michigan during the same period. The hiring forecast is lower than the last quarter, while the capital investment forecast is a slight improvement.
  • 75% believe Michigan’s economy will be the same or deteriorate over the next 6 months, about a 15% improvement over the 4th quarter survey. This is in contrast to nearly 100% thinking the US economy will be the same or get better.
  • 55% think Michigan’s economy will get better 18 months from now, an improvement from the 4th quarter survey results. However, most still believe the US economy will be stronger than Michigan’s at this time.
  • Most Michigan companies expect to perform better than their sector competitors.

“The survey should be a valuable tool for policy makers because it gives them a real-time snapshot of business trends and forecasts,” said Doug Rothwell, president & CEO of Business Leaders for Michigan. “As previous Business Leaders for Michigan surveys predicted, the results show that the Michigan economy won’t bottom out until 2011. Some modest hiring will begin in the next six months, but Michigan’s economic performance will continue to lag the US for at least the next 18 months. This means we will continue to get smaller and poorer relative to other states – a trend that must be reversed. We continue to believe the only solution is to adopt holistic, fundamental reforms that address spending, taxes and investments like those outlined in the Michigan Turnaround Plan”

About Business Leaders for Michigan

Business Leaders for Michigan (, the state’s business roundtable, is dedicated to making Michigan a “Top Ten” state for job and economic growth. The organization is composed exclusively of the chairpersons, chief executives or most senior executives of Michigan’s largest companies and universities, which provide over 300,000 jobs in Michigan, generate over $1 Trillion in annual revenue and serve over 130,000 students. The organization’s work is defined by the Michigan Turnaround Plan, a holistic, fact-based strategy to get Michigan’s economy back on track. Visit for more information.

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