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Deloitte Romania CFO Survey 2017

Challenged Optimism

After a 2016 that brought accelerating growth and falling unemployment rates, Romanian CFOs are looking with confidence for the year to come, according to the eight edition of Deloitte Romania CFO Survey 2017. Thus 70% of the Romanian CFOs expect their revenues will increase in the year ahead and almost half of the CFOs who took part in the Deloitte survey estimate a GDP growth of over 2.6%, which makes them among the most optimistic in the region.

“With the highest economic growth in Europe in 2016, Romania experienced a period of stability and prosperity that has reached a peak last year. However, we are experiencing a testing environment with multiple risk factors that may slow down the Romanian economy,” said Ahmed Hassan, Partner Deloitte Romania and CFO program leader.

External events such as Brexit have raised mixed feelings, half of the surveyed Romanian CFOs expecting a negative effect on their businesses, and another 39% expecting a positive impact, most likely due to an increase in retaining local workforce in the market.
63% of the local CFOs are considering the current environment as having a normal level of uncertainty.

“Local CFOs are more interested to maintain the current operational performances, rather than embark on risky activities and we expect this trend to continue,” added Hassan.

Two major areas of concern for the local CFOs are the shortage of qualified workforce as well as a market pressure for price decrease of offered goods and services.

According to the survey, Romanian CFOs are more cautious and risk averse as 70% of them considering this is not a good time to be taking greater risk onto their company’s balance sheets. In addition, 74% of the local CFOs consider cost control as a priority for their businesses and 42.2% think it is important to reduce direct and indirect costs.

Deloitte CFO Survey in Romania: Key Findings

  • Most of the Romanian CFOs are expecting a GDP growth of over 2.6% in 2017
  • 60% of the interviewed CFOs expect consumer price index to rise over the next year
  • Almost half of the interviewed Romanian CFOs expect a lower level of unemployment, while the greatest proportion predict their companies workforces will grow
  • For 62.5% of the Romanian CFOs the current business environment has a normal level of uncertainty 
  • 42% of the CFOs consider costs reduction as an important area of concern
  • 70% of the Romanian CFOs expect their revenues to increase in the following year
  • 47% of the CFOs expect stagnation for operating margins, suggesting that companies are keener on maintaining current operational performances
  • Over half of the inquired CFOs have a negative feeling regarding Brexit, while 39% expect a positive impact following it

The eighth edition of the report presents the opinions of almost 600 CFOs based in twelve Central European countries: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia and Ukraine. The annual questionnaire tracks the latest thinking and actions of CFOs representing largest and most influential companies in the Central European region. It explores top-tier CFO issues across five areas: business environment, company priorities and expectations, finance priorities, CFO role.

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