New York State Business Climate Study, Nov. 2001

Six months ago, businesses in New York State, although pessimistic about the state and national economy, were surprisingly optimistic about their own futures, planning to hire more employees and make capital investments. However, the business environment that exists today is different than the environment that existed on September 10th. It is reflected in every aspect of our working life and it is reflected in this data. Both the national and New York State economies are perceived to be worse today than they were 12 months ago and the future isn't much brighter with the majority of business people of New York State believing that unemployment is going to rise. We see increasing uncertainty in the minds of New York State business people, but more than a third still plan to make capital investments over the next year. The number with firm plans to hire has dropped from 20 to 17 percent, but only 22 percent, compared to 32 percent in May, say they will definitely not hire during the next 12 months. Eight percent said they had definite plans to reduce employment. That is a slight increase from the five percent in May who said they had definite plans. Another 57 percent are not hiring additional employees or are unsure about their employment outlook. Almost 50 percent are uncertain about future employee reductions.

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