Chief financial officers surveyed recently expect employment and capital spending to slow over the next year, due to inflationary pressures on input costs, such as high fuel and health care costs, increased costs of short-term borrowing, and a lack of pricing power.

Marking a new low for CFO optimism, this quarter, 40 percent of U.S. CFOs are more optimistic about the economy than they were last quarter, while 26 percent are less optimistic, according to the June 2005 Duke University/CFO Magazine Business Outlook survey of 365 U.S. CFOs. Last quarter, 46 percent of CFOs were more optimistic, while 54 percent were more optimistic two quarters ago, and more than 70 percent were more optimistic a year ago, according to survey results.

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