For the first time in almost a year, executives responding to the McKinsey Global Survey are more optimistic about their national economies – even in the Eurozone where Greece's debt crisis has been having a negative impact on many other European economies.
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Nearly one-third (32 percent) of Eurozone respondents expect their national economies to improve over the next six months, while 35 percent expect them to remain the same. Compare that to six months ago when only 18 percent expected improvement and 57 percent expected it to worsen.
In North America, the optimism is even stronger: 59 percent of North American respondents expect improvement in the next six month; only 11 percent expect worsening conditions.
Low customer demand remains the No. 1 risk for respondents, but concerns over economic volatility dropped from No. 2 in the December survey to No. 6 on the current survey.
Not all of the results are optimistic, however. Concerns about high commodity prices have increased, particularly those related to oil prices, and expectations are for more inflation over the next six months.
And uncertainly still continues to dominate the landscape when discussing the Eurozone economies. But that is expected to remain until the sovereign debt crisis finds some resolution.