confidence in Houston's economic outlook

Business owners have positive 2006 outlook, study finds
— reported by the Houston Business Journal

A study conducted by a Houston-based human resources firm shows that a large majority of company owners have a positive business forecast for the remainder of 2006.

In addition, a majority of business owners are either meeting or exceeding growth estimates this year, according to the Business Confidence Survey from Administaff Inc. (NYSE: ASF). A total of 86 percent of survey respondents said their businesses have been growing at expected rates or better-than-expected rates since the beginning of the year.

At least 31 percent of respondents think they will exceed their initial expectations for the year, while 61 percent said they expect their business growth to be on target for the remainder of the year.

A total of 79 percent of those surveyed said they feel positive or mostly positive about business conditions for the balance of 2006. Nearly 18 percent were neutral in this category.

Of the respondents, 44 percent plan to hire more workers in 2006 than they did in 2005, and 63 percent said overtime is likely to remain the same through the end of the year.


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