Auto industry executives are more bullish on their own companies' 2012 revenues, and more bearish on the overall economy, than they were four months ago, a new industry survey shows.
Consulting firm KPMG surveyed the executives in July and again in October. Last month, 77 percent of the executives surveyed expected their companies to have higher revenue next year, up from 72 percent three months earlier.
But just 42 percent expect the economy to improve in 2012, down from 58 percent in July. And 73 percent don't foresee a full economic recovery until the end of 2013 or later, up slightly from 71 percent who said the same in July.
Their own bearishness may contribute to a sluggish economy. They're less inclined to boost hiring and spending.
Fifty percent of executives surveyed in October expected to add employees next year, down significantly from 62 percent who said they would in July.
A similar decline was found in projections for capital spending: In July, 71 percent expected to increase capital spending. Now, only 62 percent expect to do so.
The sample size was fairly small. The survey measured the responses of 89 executives, more than half of whom work for companies that generate more than $10 billion of revenue annually.