Businesses optimistic about growth prospects in the next three months, survey shows

BUSINESSES in Singapore remain upbeat about growth prospects over the next three months, a study released yesterday showed.

Business information provider Dun & Bradstreet (D&B) Singapore's latest Business Optimism Index, conducted every quarter, showed that the percentage of companies expecting higher profits and sales volumes has risen over the previous quarter.

Each quarter, 200 business owners and senior executives representing major industry sectors are surveyed on six indicators of optimism: expectations of upcoming quarterly sales, profits, employment, new orders, inventories and selling prices.

The survey showed a positive "net optimism index" of 18.3 percentage points for both sales volume and net profits in the third quarter. The index is obtained by subtracting the percentage of pessimistic firms from the percentage of optimistic firms.

This shows an improvement in both measures over the previous quarter - the "optimism level" for volume of sales was at 17.5 percentage points for the second quarter, while that for net profits was at 11.6 percentage points.