Survey: Quarterly Outlook of Triangle Entrepreneurs shows continued, and slightly higher optimism, in Q2 2018

The Quarterly Outlook of Triangle Entrepreneurs (QuOTE) survey for Q2 2018, conducted by the City of Raleigh and the NC State Entrepreneurship Clinic finds continued, and slightly higher, optimism marking another consecutive quarter of index gains.

Among the entrepreneurs participating in this survey, a greater percentage – 91.8 percent (vs. 91.1 percent in Q1 2018) – report that they anticipate the next six months may bring increases in sales. In terms of capital spending, a slightly lower percentage – 60.6 percent (vs. 63.3 percent) – anticipate increases, while for employment a greater percentage – 73.8 percent (vs. 69.3 percent) anticipate increases.

“As we’ve emphasized all along, the strength of the outlook index is that we can identify trends over time. So, this is good news for our entrepreneurial ecosystem—we’ve now seen one more consecutive quarter of growing optimism” says Lewis Sheats, associate professor of practice in entrepreneurship in the NC State Poole College of Management and executive director of the NC State Entrepreneurship Clinic.”

“This growing optimism, so far, seems robust to seasonality and the ambiguity in the political environment,” he said. “Within these new data, we are perhaps seeing the results of recent capital spending that is now resulting in greater sales and employment growth. As a community, we need to recognize this need—for ventures to scale up and manage growth—and support them as much as we can in sustaining the expansion,” said Sheats.

The City of Raleigh and the NC State Entrepreneurship Clinic in conjunction with Poole College jointly conduct the quarterly survey, which helps entrepreneurial companies in the Triangle region anticipate business decisions and plan for growth. Jeff Pollack, an associate professor in the NC State Poole College of Management adapted the survey and analyzed the data based on the Business Roundtable, an association of CEOs of American companies that conducts a similar survey nationally with large companies.

The following survey results from the second quarter of 2018 show projections for the next six months for sales, spending and employment:

2018 Q2 2018 Q1
Increase No Change Decrease Increase No Change Decrease
How do you expect your company’s sales to change in the next six months? 91.8% 6.6% 1.6% 91.1% 6.9% 2.0%
How do you expect your company’s U.S. capital spending to change in the next six months? 60.6% 37.8% 1.6% 63.3% 34.7% 2.0%
How do you expect your company’s U.S. employment to change in the next six months? 73.8% 24.6% 1.6% 69.3% 30.7% 0.0%

 

The results also provide an overall entrepreneurs’ economic outlook index, which is based on businesses’ projected six-month sales, capital spending, and employment figures. Over time, trends in this index can be viewed as indicating general optimism or pessimism about entrepreneurship in the Triangle.

Entrepreneurs’ Economic Outlook Index

Survey Date Entrepreneurs’ Economic Outlook Index
Q2 2018 123.80
Q1 2018 123.23
Q4 2017 116.17
Q3 2017 114.00
Q2 2017 116.30
Q1 2017 117.07
Q4 2016 108.47
Q3 2016 110.70
Q2 2016 103.80
Q1 2016 110.77
Q4 2015 103.93
Q3 2015 107.80
Q2 2015 121.83
Q1 2015 117.68
Q4 2014 113.67

 

A full report on the findings is available online at http://entrepreneurshipclinic.ncsu.edu/clinic-research/.

The City of Raleigh and the NC State Entrepreneurship Clinic and Poole College of Management plan to expand the survey. Triangle entrepreneurs who would like to participate should email their name, business, and email address to TheEClinic@ncsu.edu. Participation is free, and responses are confidential.

This post was originally published in Poole College of Management News.

Leave a Response

Your email address will not be published. All fields are required.