Xinhua recently reported on some research that the firm Grant Thornton, an international organization of independent audit, tax, and advisory firms, had done on the business indicators of a number of Chinese companies. The study titled, International Business Report (IBR), revealed that 40 percent of the surveyed Chinese companies found the uncertainty that the economy faced was having a major impact on the growth of their businesses. The research results also showed that four percent of the companies felt optimistic about the future. This number had dropped 21 percent from the first quarter to the second quarter of this year. The study indicated that expectations of company sales, product prices, export volume, hiring plans, and profits had all dropped from the first quarter. Especially for the indicators of exports, employment, and profitability, the companies’ level of confidence dropped to a two-year low. Investments in research and development declined by 14 percent in the past 12 months; most of the companies were increasing their cash reserves. Grant Thornton concluded that there is no clear sign of an economic recovery for the Chinese market. The same report for the U.S. market showed a dramatic increase of 24 percent in the confidence level.
Source: Xinhua, July 11, 2013