US executives expect equal or better profitability in 2020

03 January 2020 2 min. read
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Executives are bullish on 2020, according to a recent survey from accounting and consulting firm EisnerAmper. The survey polled 940 business leaders in the Northeast US and Florida, with 40% of respondents in professional and financial services, and the rest in other sectors including healthcare, technology, manufacturing, and real estate.

Seventy-six percent of execs said that their businesses will be more or equally profitable in 2020 than they were in 2019. More than half (55%) said their businesses will see higher profits, 22% expected the same level of profits, and only 9% said they expect lower profits in 2020.

Respondents’ largest concern for 2020 was the possibility of an economic slowdown, at 54%. Trailing that were concerns about talent/hiring (12%), cybersecurity (10%), and taxes/regulations (9%).

Fifty-eight percent of respondents said that employee compensation as a percentage of budget would increase in 2020, while 39% said it would remain unchanged, and 3% said it would decrease.

US executives expect equal or better profitability in 2020

With many organizations currently embarking on the journey of artificial intelligence integration, and many employees worrying about job losses in particular sectors (admin, transport & logistics, etc.), the survey asked business leaders how they felt AI would impact their hiring. Twenty percent said it would lead to an increase in hiring, especially as they seek out IT staff to implement and manage the new technology. Meanwhile, 12% said it would lead to a decrease in hiring, and 26% said it would not impact their hiring.

The largest proportion of respondents said that it was too soon to say how AI would impact their hiring, at 42%.

"This year's survey shows that, while business leaders recognize the risk of potential economic headwinds, the mood is overwhelmingly positive, and companies believe they are well-positioned to grow," said Charles Weinstein, CEO of EisnerAmper. "However, given the concerns of a potential slowdown, it is critical that companies plan methodically and comprehensively for an uncertain year.”