The Associated Press reported today that the Institute for Supply Management reported its services sector index rose in December over November which surprised economists who had expected it to slip. This is a survey of U.S. services for new orders and employment.
They also reported the Commerce Department said orders to U.S. factories declined for the 4th straight month in November and analysts believe manufacturing will continue to suffer in coming months. The report showed a 4.6% decline in November. The weakness in November reflected a big drop in demand for commercial aircraft. Weakness was also seen in autos, primary metals such as steel, and defense communications equipment.
Factory orders for durable goods, items expected to last more than 3 years, fell by 1.5% in November while order for nondurable goods dropped by 7.5%.
Demand for heating and airconditioning products fell by 11.6% in November, reflecting in part the hard times the nation's homebuilders are enduring.
Clearly the economy has slowed in many areas and CEOs have to take action to protect their firms performance during these challenging times. There is business out there but many successful businesses are rethinking their basic strategies in order to take advantage of the opportunities that due exist in the marketplace.