Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Pakistan accountants are more optimistic - despite concerns, global economic conditions survey shows

Pakistan accountants are more optimistic -
despite concerns, global economic conditions survey shows.

The threat posed by levels of sovereign debt and rising inflation to
the global economic recovery has been highlighted in the world's
largest regular survey of professional accountants.

The Global Economic Conditions Survey for the second quarter of 2010
by ACCA (the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) shows
that, for the first time, the majority of global respondents now
believe that conditions are either improving or about to.

The picture in Pakistan

Although respondents in Pakistan to the global economic conditions
survey are becoming more optimistic about the prospects of the global
economy, concerns about the domestic economic situation have held
business confidence down, relative to the rest of the South Asian
sample, with no net gains reported since the first quarter of 2010.
While 60% of the Pakistan sample believed that the global economy is
either recovering or about to, the majority of respondents (54%)
reported that their confidence levels had remained unchanged in Q2
2010, while 23% reported confidence gains and an equal number reported

Key domestic influences included a high level of inflation, with 60%
of respondents reporting problems with rising operating costs, and
subdued demand, which affected 57% of respondents (or their clients).
The combined effect of the two has meant very subdued investment
activity: the supply of capital for investment has fallen
substantially as interest rates have remained high and profitable
investment opportunities have dwindled.

The Global Picture

While more members worldwide are now optimistic about economic
prospects, the majority of the 2,200 finance professionals responding
to the survey continue to have doubts about the apparent improvements.

The slowdown in Asia has continued for a second consecutive quarter,
and Africa, which had been performing strongly until recently, now
appears to be following suit. ACCA believes much of this slowdown is
down to a weak recovery in Europe and the US and to monetary
contraction in China, which has now continued for two quarters in a

The recovery in Western Europe, which had stalled in early 2010, has
now gone into reverse as fears about sovereign debt and the future of
the Eurozone weigh on finance professionals' minds.
Although investment is still low, business investment bounced back
faster in the second quarter of than at any time since the downturn
began, driven by both the incidence of profitable investment
opportunities and improvements in the supply of finance.

But the survey shows that time may be running out for business people
to capitalise on the conditions created by the downturn - with
business opportunities appearing to have peaked in the third quarter
of 2009.

The full report can be accessed on the following link :

Husnain Rasheed