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Fortune 500 CEOs were optimistic about the economy and would like to own shares of Microsoft and Nvidia

At a time when public sentiment about the economy is noticeably gloomy, the CEOs of the Fortune 500 appear surprisingly optimistic in our annual survey. Only 28% think the US economy will enter a recession in the next 12 months. Nearly 70% believe the Federal Reserve will cut rates before the end of 2024, indicating they think policymakers are closer to reducing inflation. And fewer than one in five believe their company will reduce its workforce this year.

Like the rest of the business world, these CEOs are concerned with AI, but few seem concerned about its disruptive impact. Only 22% cited technology transformation as one of their top concerns. As a group, they also show their admiration for AI in other ways: the CEO they admire most is Satya Nadella, the architect of Microsoft’s race to the front of the pack in generative AI. And the stocks they would personally most like to own are Microsoft and AI chip dominator Nvidia.

Survey conducted April 18 to 28, 2024.

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