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CFO Quarterly Outlook Report: November 2010

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Chief Financial Officers are slowly but surely easing from the recession, and are finding new opportunities to hire, despite unemployment levels remaining historically high. According to the most recent survey of CFOs conducted by Financial Executives International (FEI) and Baruch College’s Zicklin School of Business, many companies are focused on retaining their existing talent, and are taking measures to do so. As their overall optimism rises, an increasing number of CFOs are showing interest in making acquisitions, demonstrating progress from the previous year. According to the Q3 2010 “CFO Outlook Survey,” CFOs are showing steady signs of increased confidence. Following last quarter’s sudden decline, the Q3 CFO Optimism Index for the U.S. economy bounced back to rise nearly two points (from 53.60 to 55.20), and the outlook for CFOs’ own companies showed a comparable increase (67.40 in Q2 to 69.1 in Q3). This quarter, the CFO Outlook Survey, conducted by Financial Executives International and Baruch College’s Zicklin School of Business, interviewed 249 corporate CFOs electronically from October 6-14. CFOs from both public and private companies and from a broad range of industries, revenues and geographic areas, including some off-shore companies, are represented. Survey respondents are members of Financial Executives International.

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