WEOS Finger Lakes Public Radio

Siena survey: Upstate NY CEOs pessimistic about business prospects this year

Apr 12, 2021
Originally published on April 12, 2021 10:06 am

Many CEOs in upstate New York say that economic conditions have worsened during the pandemic and a number of them are still pessimistic for the rest of this year, according to a recent survey by Siena College

Don Levy, director of Siena College Research Institute, said the survey shows that 80% of CEOs said economic conditions worsened since the beginning of the pandemic, and 43% of them believe conditions will get worse this year, while 17% say conditions will remain about the same. More than a thousand business leaders from across the upstate area were surveyfrom January through March.

“The arithmetic is brutal, overwhelmingly they say that the cost of doing business is up, but my revenues, my profits, are down. So, it has been a year of experiencing tremendous hardship and loss for most of upstate businesses,” Levy said, adding that only about 40% of the CEOs believe economic conditions in upstate New York will improve this year.

Levy does think that a number of these business leaders could see their outlook brighten later this year.

“I think with stimulus money out in the marketplace, with people being vaccinated, with more and more of our lives returning towards normal, that business will pick up and I think 2021 is going to be a little bit of a better year than (the CEOs) we interviewed in this survey, at least over the winter when we spoke to them, (had) predicted,” Levy said.

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