New York (Oct. 9, 2003) -- The nation's fastest-growing companies think the economy is on an upswing, according to a new PricewaterhouseCoopers' "Trendsetter Barometer" survey.

Of the 383 privately-held companies, ranging in size from $5 million to $150 million in revenue, 70 percent say they are planning new hiring -- the largest number since 2000, the survey found.

Although the chief executives at these companies still expressed concerns about weak demand for their products or services, they have overwhelmingly raised their revenue growth targets for the year.

To view the complete survey, click here: http://www.barometersurveys.com

-- WebCPA staff

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