More than three-quarters of chief financial officers in the U.S. and Mexico are worried that the coronavirus pandemic will lead to a global recession, finds a pulse survey released this week by PwC.
The survey of 50 financial leaders from Fortune 1000 companies, healthcare nonprofit associations and privately held companies, conducted the week of March 9, found that 54% said they expected COVID-19 to have the potential for “significant impact to our business operations, and it is causing us great concern,” whereas 34% said they expected the crisis to be limited to specific regions in their business.
Other top concerns were a decrease in consumer confidence which would reduce consumption (48%), financial effect on operations, liquidity and capital resources (48%), and how it will affect the companies’ workforce and productivity (42%).
“Most finance leaders surveyed seem to be optimistic about a resolution to the spread of the coronavirus and as a result are focused on near-term versus long-term solutions to managing costs,” said Amity Millhiser, PwC US vice chair and chief clients officer. “However, if conditions continue to deteriorate, we would expect to see a pullback in long-term investment spending as companies move to longer-term cost containment strategies.”
The firm plans to repeat the survey every two weeks to track changing sentiment and priorities.