The country’s top chief executive officers downgraded their growth outlook for the U.S. economy amid (stop me if you’ve heard this one) uncertainty over the direction of the ongoing trade war with China, according to the latest survey released Wednesday.
“This quarter’s survey shows American businesses now have their foot poised above the brake, and they’re tapping the brake periodically.”
The Business Roundtable’s members see growth slowing to about 2.3%, down from the 2.6% estimate of gross domestic product during the last quarter after hiring, capital investment and sales all declined.
“This quarter’s survey shows American businesses now have their foot poised above the brake, and they’re tapping the brake periodically,” Business Roundtable President Joshua Bolten said via statement, according to CNBC. “Uncertainty is preventing the full potential of the economy from being unleashed, limiting growth and investment here in the U.S.”
Roundtable Chair and JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon said tensions with China are the No. 1 threat, along with the yet-to-be-passed United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, which House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Tuesday was on the road to passing soon.
The survey asked respondents to rate the impact of the trade war on their businesses during the past year.
More than half reported a somewhat or very negative impact on sales, and 40% of manufacturing CEOs said their capital investments took a dive.
Not one company reported a positive impact.
U.S. CEOs have been among the most active in calling for a North American trade deal while also calling on the Trump administration to reign in the rhetoric against China and the tariffs against Chinese imports.
“The U.S. needs strong, sustained, long-term economic growth in order to remain globally competitive and expand opportunity for more Americans,” Dimon said. “Business Roundtable CEOs stand ready to work with policymakers to address our nation’s biggest challenges to create conditions for inclusive growth, investment and job creation here in America.”