The annual survey conducted by UHY Advisers-Texas says 2014 will see a 'Goldilocks economy,' in the Lone Star State. Not too hot, not too cold, but just right.
The public accounting firm's January survey found a broad majority of Texas business executives expect revenue growth, and growth in other key performance measures, including employment and capital investment, according to principal Bill Penczak.
"A majority of them indicated there is going to be both revenue growth and profit growth," he said. "That seemed to go across a number of different industries."
He says both large corporations and small companies are equally optimistic about their prospects in 2014.
Executives do not expect their growth to come from international customers in 2014, due largely to sputtering economies in Asia, Europe and elsewhere. They expect much of their growth to be from Texas and domestic sales. Not surprisingly, energy companies are the most bullish, as the Eagle Ford is expected to hit peak production in 2014, and the Cline Shale in the Permian Basin continues to ram up.
Penczak says many corporate executives say politicians in Washington DC, while not trusted to actually do something worthwhile to benefit the economy in 2014, at least will not be as wacky as they were last year, or have faded into such irrelevance that their antics can be ignored.
"The impact of Obamacare, rather real or perceives, is kind of a done deal," he said. "That is now in the past, and while it has caused a lot of consternation, it has led to more stability now."
And Penczak says the expected upheaval when the corporate mandate expires at the end of this month and companies are required to adhere to Obamacare mandates will not be happening.
“Only 2% reported they will put their employees on the exchange, and another two percent say the plan to drop the plan,” he said.
87% of Texas employers don’t see Obamacare causing them to make more than the usual changes in health insurance coverages. He says coverage will probably cost more, but with the rising costs of health care, cost increases are happening independent of the Affordable Care Act.
He says other disruptions caused by Congress in 2013, from the fiscal cliff to the debt ceiling scare to sequestration to the government shutdown appear to be in the past.
And he says all this is good news not just for executives and shareholders, but for workers as well.
“About sixty percent of the companies said they are going to have some increase, or a significant increase, in employment.”