Duke University/CFO
Global Business Outlook Survey
Third Quarter 2008

No individual firms are identified and only aggregate data are made public. Please respond by September 4. If you have any questions about this survey, please contact us.

1. Are you more or less optimistic about the U.S. economy compared to last quarter?
More optimistic
Less optimistic
No change
Rate your optimism about the U.S. economy on a scale from 0-100, with 0 being the least optimistic and 100 being the most optimistic.

2. Are you more or less optimistic about the financial prospects for your company compared to last quarter?
More optimistic
Less optimistic
No change
Rate your optimism about the financial prospects for your own company on a scale from 0-100, with 0 being the least optimistic and 100 being the most optimistic.

3. What are the top three external concerns facing your corporation? (rank #1, #2, #3)
   Consumer demand
   Cost of fuel
   Cost of non-fuel commodities
   Credit markets/interest rates
   Environmental regulation
   Financial regulation
   Housing market fallout
   International political instability
   Upcoming change in U.S. administration
   Foreign competition
   Trade policies and trade agreements
   Value of the dollar
   Other:    

4. What are the three top internal, company-specific concerns for your corporation? (rank #1, #2, #3)
   Ability to forecast results
   Attracting and retaining qualified employees
   Cost of health care
   Managing IT systems
   Data security
   Protection of intellectual property
   Supply chain risk
   Balance sheet weakness
   Other:    

5. Relative to the previous 12 months, what will be your company's PERCENTAGE CHANGE during the next 12 months? (e.g., +3%, -2%, etc.) [Leave blank if not applicable]
   Prices of your products
   Productivity (output per hour worked)
   Technology spending
   Capital spending
   Marketing/advertising spending
   Number of domestic employees overall
   Number of domestic employees in accounting/finance
   Number of foreign/off-shore outsourced employees
   Wages/Salaries
   Health care costs
   Earnings
   Cash on the balance sheet
   Dividends
   Share repurchases

6a. In the next 12 months, does your company plan to:
  Acquire another company or companies?
  Acquire part of another company or companies?
  Both
  Neither

6b. In the next 12 months, does your company plan to:
  Sell your company?
  Sell part of your company?
  Neither

7. In your organization, to whom does the CIO report?
  CEO
  CFO
  Chief Administrative Officer
  Our organization doesn't have a CIO
  Other (please specify)    

8a. Has your company been affected by the cost or availability of credit?
  No
  Yes, somewhat   
  Yes, very much  
8b. If yes, in what ways has your company been affected by the credit market turmoil?
   [check all that apply]
    Decreased availability of credit
          
Check here if you experienced difficulty initiating or renewing a bank credit line
  Increased cost of credit
     How many basis points increase since summer 2007?   bps
  Other:   

 

9. Do you anticipate that economic conditions will cause your company to take any of the following actions over the next six months?
  Yes No
Delay, reduce or cancel new investment plans
Delay, reduce or cancel hiring plans
Establish a substantial cost cutting program
Initiate or accelerate new investment plans
Initiate or accelerate new hiring
Other:      

 10. On August 25, 2008 the annual yield on 10-yr treasury bonds was 3.8%. Please complete the following:

a. Over the next 10 years, I expect the average annual S&P 500 return will be:


Worst Case: There is a 1-in-10
chance the actual average
return will be less than:

             %
Best Guess:
I expect the
return to be:

%
Best Case: There is a 1-in-10
chance the actual average
return will be greater than:

          %

b. During the next year, I expect the S&P 500 return will be:

Worst Case: There is a 1-in-10
chance the actual return will
be less than:

             %
Best Guess:
I expect the
return to be:

%
Best Case: There is a 1-in-10
chance the actual return will
be greater than:

          %

11. When do you expect the U.S. economy to begin recovery?
  Recovery already began
  2008, Quarter 4
  2009, Quarter 1
  2009, Quarter 2
  2009, Quarter 3
  2009, Quarter 4
  2010 or beyond

12. Do you approve of financial market intervention by the federal government?
  Yes No
In the case of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac?
In the case of Bear Stearns?
In general?

13. What is your company's strategic focus for 2009? To answer this question, distribute 100 points among the various choices. For example, if half of your strategic focus is revenue growth, enter 50 in the top box and distribute the remaining 50 points to reflect the relative importance of the other categories. (should add to 100)
    Revenue Growth               (Pursue new customers, increase business with existing customers, etc.)
    Direct Cost Reduction       (Improve cost efficiency of sourcing, manufacturing, distribution, service delivery, etc.)
    Overhead Cost Reduction  (Improve efficiency of shared services, SG&A, etc.)
    Asset Efficiency               (Improve management of inventory, PP&E, receivables/payables, etc.)
    Capability Development     (Strengthen managerial and operational competencies)
    Other    
   Total

14. Please check one from each category that best describes your company:

     a. Industry

       Retail/Wholesale
       Mining/Construction
       Manufacturing
       Transportation/Energy
       Communications/Media
      Tech [Software/Biotech]
      Banking/Finance/Insurance
      Service/Consulting
      Healthcare/Pharmaceutical
      Other:  
  b. Sales Revenue  c. Number of Employees
       Less than $25 million
       $25-$99 million
       $100-$499 million
       $500-$999 million
       $1-$4.9 billion
       $5-$9.9 billion
       More than $10 billion
      Fewer than 100
      100-499
      500-999
      1,000-2,499
      2,500-4,999
      5,000-9,999
      More than 10,000
  d. Headquarters   e. Ownership
       Northeast U.S.
       Mountain U.S.
       Midwest U.S.
       South Central U.S.
       South Atlantic U.S.
       Pacific U.S.
 Canada
 Central/South America
 Mexico
 Europe
 Asia
 Africa
      Public, NYSE
      Public, NASDAQ/AMEX
      Private
      Government
      Nonprofit
  f. Foreign Sales   g. Your job title (e.g., CFO, Asst. Treasurer, etc)
       0%
       1-24%
       25-50%
       More than 50%

      

  h. What is your company's credit rating?

       

 
If you do not have a rating, please estimate what your rating would be.


Duke University, 2008