Top CEOs call for "major" coronavirus stimulus to keep economy from backsliding

Business Roundtable surveyed 149 members about projected sales, capital spending and hiring for the next six months. The CEO Economic Outlook Survey rose to 64.0 in the third quarter, the headline index’s first quarterly increase in nine quarters, according to a report released Wednesday. The index is up 29.7 points since last quarter but remains well below the historical average of 81.7, which dates to 2002.

More than a third of the group — whose members include the CEOs of Apple, JPMorgan Chase and Chevron — expect economic conditions to remain bumpy until 2022 or later. The poll, taken from Aug. 31 to Sept. 16, showed a gradual economic recovery from the pandemic, mirrored in the labor market, consumer spending and industrial production. But the findings highlight they don’t see the recovery reaching every sector soon, particularly small businesses…

“Further major support from the federal government is necessary to prevent economic recovery from being derailed,” Bolten said in a statement. “Failure to act, along with the lack of comprehensive and coordinated efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19, would impose long term damage on the U.S. economy, hurting most the workers and small businesses least able to absorb the blow.”

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