Corporate Directors Forecast Stronger Economy in 2014

WASHINGTON, Nov. 7, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Public company directors are confident the economy will improve in 2014, according to a quarterly survey by the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD). The NACD Board Confidence Index (BCI) found that nearly one-half of those surveyed (46%) expect better economic conditions a year from now.

In the short term, however, a majority of corporate directors (68.9%) believe the economic picture in Q4 2013 would remain relatively unchanged from Q3 2013. Respondents also said the hiring outlook for the remainder of 2013 would likely be flat, with a majority (64%) noting they would retain the current number of employees.

These predictions from the NACD BCI, which offers a view of the state of the economy from the boardroom, are based on five key indicators listed in the chart below. Scores above 50 are positive, scores around 50 are uncertain, and those below 50 are negative.



Overall
BCI
Current
Economic
Conditions
vs. 1 Yr Ago
Current
Economic
Conditions
vs. 3 Mos Ago
Current
Economic
Conditions
1 Yr Ahead
Current
Economic
Conditions
3 Mos Ahead
57 (-2) 60 (-6) 53 58 (-6) 53

Scores are from Q3 2013 compared to data from Q2 2013.

"While the remainder of 2013 may not include dramatic spikes in economic confidence or hiring, directors are maintaining a positive outlook on the overall health of the economy for this last quarter," said Ken Daly, president and CEO of NACD.

The NACD BCI, produced in conjunction with compensation consultancy Pearl Meyer & Partners, also has asked directors throughout 2013 to list their key considerations in the development of executive compensation programs. Consistently, participants have ranked competitive market practices and their company's business strategy first.

"Directors are right to cite business strategy as the most important factor in executive pay decision making, but in practice we find many compensation committees are still highly focused on ISS and other proxy firm guidelines," said David N. Swinford, president and CEO of Pearl Meyer & Partners. "We believe there is still a need to re-prioritize pay designs to the needs of the business."

For detailed metrics, methodology, and historical data from the BCI, visit www.NACDonline.org/BCI. For additional insights on how the Q3 2013 BCI results will impact corporate pay practices, visit www.pearlmeyer.com/boardconfidenceindex.

About NACD

The National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) is the only membership organization focused exclusively on advancing exemplary board leadership. Based on more than 35 years of experience, NACD identifies, interprets, and provides insights and information that corporate board members rely upon to make sound strategic decisions, confidently confront complex business challenges, and enhance shareowner value. With 14,000 corporate director members, NACD provides world-class director education, director training, and proprietary research about leading boardroom and corporate governance practices to promote director professionalism and bolster investor confidence. Furthermore, to create more effective and efficient corporate boards, NACD provides independent board evaluations and custom-tailored in-boardroom education and training programs, as well as director-led conferences, forums, and peer-exchange learning opportunities to share ideas about current and emerging issues. Fostering collaboration among directors and governance stakeholders, NACD is shaping the future of board leadership. To learn more about NACD, visit www.NACDonline.org. To join, please contact Kelly Dodd at kkdodd@NACDonline.org or 202-380-1891.

About Pearl Meyer & Partners

For more than 20 years, Pearl Meyer & Partners (www.pearlmeyer.com) has served as a trusted independent advisor to boards and their senior management in the areas of compensation governance, strategy, and program design. The firm provides comprehensive solutions to complex compensation challenges for companies ranging from the Fortune 500 to not-for-profits as well as emerging high-growth companies. These organizations rely on Pearl Meyer & Partners to develop programs that align rewards with long-term business goals to create value for all stakeholders: shareholders, executives, and employees. The firm maintains offices in New York, Atlanta, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Jose, as well as London.

CONTACT: Media Contact: Henry Stoever Chief Marketing Officer 202-775-0509 hstoever@NACDonline.orgSource:National Association of Corporate Directors