Did you know that middle market companies – those with annual revenues of $10 million to $1 billion – represent 197,000 U.S. businesses and one-third of the private sector GDP, and employ approximately 43 million people? As part of an ongoing quarterly study for The National Center for the Middle Market (a partnership between GE Capital and The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business), RTi recently surveyed 1,000 CEOs, CFOs, and other C-suite executives of America’s middle market companies to accurately reflect on key indicators of economic health. The study, Middle Market Indicator 1Q 2014, found that “Middle market companies are sending a strong message that they are poised to invest capital to add jobs, equipment, make acquisitions or train employees”.
Some of the other key findings from the study were:
- Sixty-four percent of mid-market companies reported strong revenue growth.
- This latest study shows that the expected rate of growth of revenues is 4.5% for the upcoming year compared to 6.5% for the past 12 months, suggesting still strong, but somewhat tempered expectations.
- Encouragingly, smaller MM firms have rebounded since experiencing a performance dip at the end of 2013.
- Employment within the mid-market sector grew at a stronger rate of 3.7% in Q4. Hiring expectations over the next 12 months were also more positive, rising to a mean growth of 3.2%.
- Mid-market managers remain confident in the local/regional economy, the main hub of operations for middle market firms, and the global economy.
- Yet concerns remain. While confident, business leaders nevertheless continue to flag health care costs and taxation as revenue growth inhibitors.
So what does this mean for your business? Do you agree? What’s your company experiencing? What are your executives thinking? As market researchers, we always want to hear directly from those of you “in the trenches”.