CEOs, Credit Managers Show Improved Faith In Economy

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Credit union chief executives are feeling increasingly positive about the current financial condition and are expecting to see improvements over the next six months, according to most recent CU CEO Confidence Index, compiled by Southwest Corporate FCU.

The quarterly confidence survey rose to 42.26 in April, up from just 33.44 in January. CEOs expressed significant confidence in several major categories, especially the perception of their members financial condition, which climbed to 39.49 in April-the highest level in more than two years-from just 22.90 in January. A growing number of CEOs also expect a short-term growth in shares, 28.34, up from 16.45 in January; and modest growth in loans, 29.30, from 28.39.

Separately, the National Association of Credit Management said its Credit Manager's Index for March shows a strengthening economy and growing confidence among credit managers.

The most recent CMI findings follows gains seen in the previous index for February, NACM reported.

"While seasonal factors played a role in this increase," said Dan North, chief economist with credit insurer Euler Hermes ACI, "the underlying strength of the economy demonstrated in the first quarter continues to provide solid support for the index."

That strength was widespread as the 4.9% monthly increase for the entire Index tied the record increase set three years ago, NACM, said, with record gains also seen in four of the ten service sector components.

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