Welcome!

News Feed Item

Over 350 Business Leaders Discuss Economy At Joint Santander And Greater Boston Chamber Of Commerce Event

Nearly 82% of Attending Corporate Executives and Business Owners Plan to Expand Operations or Increase Hiring over Next 12 Months

BOSTON, March 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Santander Bank, N.A., one of the largest retail banks in the United States by deposits, and the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce today hosted their 14th annual meeting for the business community focused on the region's economic outlook. Attending corporate executives and business owners were surveyed regarding their expectations for the local economy in 2014 as well as plans for their respective businesses over the coming year.

Roman Blanco, president and CEO of Santander US, said: "Massachusetts is at the forefront of the recovering US economy. Unemployment has fallen, tax revenues are up and average home prices have risen—all very positive trends. This region is poised for continued growth. "

Attendees of the annual Economic Outlook Breakfast responded to a series of economic and business-related questions during a real-time poll.

"It's encouraging to see that 82% of business leaders plan to expand their business in the year ahead—that's a 25% increase over last year," said Michael A. Lee, managing director of Commercial Banking and Real Estate at Santander. "Today's results support the optimistic trajectory we've been seeing in business sentiment."  

Nearly 46% of respondents plan to increase their capital spending in 2014 and respondents cited attracting new customers, retaining existing customers and the cost of health insurance and other employee benefits as the most significant challenges facing them over the next two years. The poll was conducted in real-time with attendees using automated response devices. In addition to questions about the U.S. and Massachusetts economies, the survey queried attendees about their local and international business expansion plans, employer hiring plans and top challenges facing regional enterprises.

"We're seeing median household income rising and unemployment coming down. That bodes well for the local economy," said Steve Andrews, senior vice president and director of fixed income at Santander. "Indicators show that Massachusetts is adding new jobs and that office vacancies are declining—a clear sign that the economy is on the right track."

Following the survey, attendees listened to a panel discussion about regional business issues.  The panel included Brian Kavoogian, founder and president of Charles River Realty Investors; Lee Pelton, president of Emerson College; Shirley Singleton, president, CEO and chairman of Edgewater Technology; and Kevin Tabb, president and CEO of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

About Santander

Santander Bank, N.A. is a top 25 retail bank in the United States by deposits.  Its main corporate offices are in Boston and it operates principally in Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island. Santander's 9,469 employees serve its 1.8 million customers through the Bank's 706 branches, 2,084 ATMs, call centers, website and mobile app. Supervised by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and a member of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Santander in the United States is a wholly-owned, financially autonomous subsidiary of Banco Santander (NYSE: SAN), a global commercial and retail bank. For more information about Santander, visit www.santanderbank.com or call 877-768-2265.

 

Santander - Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce

2014 Economic Outlook Survey Results














1. Many economists are predicting continued economic growth for the nation and for Greater Boston in 2014. Thinking about your business, do you have plans to expand operations and/or increase hiring this year?














Responses










(percent)



Yes, we expect significant growth


14.17%













Yes, we expect some growth


68.02%













No growth anticipated


14.57%













We plan to somewhat cut operations and/or hiring


2.43%













We plan to significantly cut operations and/or hiring 


0.81%









Total

100%













 

2. Which of the following factors have the most influence on your hiring plans?  Please select up to three.












Responses










(percent)



Projected sales


24.71%













Current staffing levels


20.43%













Skills of workers as compared to your company's needs


15.16%













Labor costs – (i.e. Wages, Health insurance, Unemployment insurance, etc.)






7.74%













Tax policy


0.99%













Current economic outlook


12.69%













Firm's financial health 


18.29%









Total

100%













 

3. Which of the following best describes your business's capital expense spending plan in 2014?












Responses










(percent)



Increase spending


46.06%













Decrease spending


10.79%













No change


43.15%









Total

100%























 

4. In 2014, Massachusetts residents will elect a new governor. What do you consider to be the biggest business issues facing this state that candidates should be paying attention to? Please select up to three.














Responses










(percent)



Attracting & retaining businesses


19.91%













Job creation


17.34%













Affordable housing


7.74%













Competition from neighboring states


3.01%













Attracting and retaining skilled labor


9.17%













Transportation infrastructure


12.18%













Cost of healthcare


6.45%













Overall cost of living


12.18%













Funding public education


5.87%













Tax policy  


6.16%









Total

100%



 

5. Thinking about your business, what are the most challenging issues you expect to face in the next two years? Please select up to three.












Responses










(percent)



Regulatory costs and burdens


11.74%













Cost of fuel & energy


2.82%













Cost of health insurance/other employee benefits


13.52%













Attracting new customers


26.30%













Retaining existing customers


19.76%













Hiring qualified employees


12.78%













Pressure from larger competitors


11.29%













Corporate taxes 


1.78%









Total

100%













 

6. The current unemployment rate in Massachusetts is 6.8%, yet a number of unfilled positions exist due in part to a disconnect between required job skills and the available workforce. What do you see as the best opportunity to address this issue going forward? Please select up to three.
















Responses










(percent)



Increased availability of college internships


15.34%













Expanded partnerships between community colleges and industry


26.38%













Enhanced state workforce training programs


15.80%













Development of new university degree programs


11.66%













Increased investment in K-12 STEM education


21.17%













Broader access to skilled foreign graduates and workers


9.66%









Total

100%













 

7. A major transportation bill was passed in 2013 that is designed to help strengthen the state's transportation system. Which area of transportation infrastructure is most important to your business?














Responses










(percent)



Highways and roads


55.23%













Subway


21.76%













Airport


9.21%













Commuter rail


11.30%













Cargo


2.51%









Total

100%























 

8. Last year, Congress enacted 72 new laws – the lowest in any first year of a Congressional session since 1973. In your opinion, how much is the continued gridlock in Washington impacting the regional and national economy?














Responses










(percent)



Significantly


64.68%













Moderately


26.19%













Not at all


9.13%









Total

100%



9. Greater Boston has seen a significant boom in the housing market over the past year, resulting in increased competition for housing and rising prices. To what extent do you foresee this affecting your ability to attract and retain workers?
















Responses










(percent)



Significantly


28.11%













Moderately


44.98%













Not at all


26.91%









Total

100%













 

10. The Massachusetts Legislature is currently debating legislation that could increase the minimum wage in Massachusetts.  What impact, if any, would this wage hike have on your business?














Responses










(percent)



Significant impact


13.25%













Moderate impact


25.64%













No impact


61.11%









Total

100%























 

11. How likely are you to expand your business outside the US over the next year?










Responses










(percent)



Highly likely


14.04%













Likely


15.32%













Not sure


14.04%













We have no plans to expand our business globally


56.60%









Total

100%













 

12. What might inhibit your international expansion plans?  Please select up to three.










Responses










(percent)



Lack of access to local market intelligence in geographic target areas






25.57%













Securing legal, accounting or financial experts who are experienced in foreign trade






18.03%













Managing currency risk


7.87%













Language barriers


8.85%













Lack of available workers experienced in global trade


11.15%













Geopolitical risks


13.44%













We are already fully prepared to expand internationally 


15.08%









Total

100%






















 

SOURCE Santander Bank, N.A.

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
The Jevons Paradox suggests that when technological advances increase efficiency of a resource, it results in an overall increase in consumption. Writing on the increased use of coal as a result of technological improvements, 19th-century economist William Stanley Jevons found that these improvements led to the development of new ways to utilize coal. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Mark Thiele, Chief Strategy Officer for Apcera, compared the Jevons Paradox to modern-day enterprise IT, examin...
The taxi industry never saw Uber coming. Startups are a threat to incumbents like never before, and a major enabler for startups is that they are instantly “cloud ready.” If innovation moves at the pace of IT, then your company is in trouble. Why? Because your data center will not keep up with frenetic pace AWS, Microsoft and Google are rolling out new capabilities. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Don Browning, VP of Cloud Architecture at Turner, posited that disruption is inevitable for comp...
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that ICC-USA, a computer systems integrator and server manufacturing company focused on developing products and product appliances, will exhibit at the 22nd International CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO. DXWordEXPO New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City. ICC is a computer systems integrator and server manufacturing company focused on developing products and product appliances to meet a wide range of ...
In his Opening Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, John Considine, General Manager of IBM Cloud Infrastructure, led attendees through the exciting evolution of the cloud. He looked at this major disruption from the perspective of technology, business models, and what this means for enterprises of all sizes. John Considine is General Manager of Cloud Infrastructure Services at IBM. In that role he is responsible for leading IBM’s public cloud infrastructure including strategy, development, and offering m...
The next XaaS is CICDaaS. Why? Because CICD saves developers a huge amount of time. CD is an especially great option for projects that require multiple and frequent contributions to be integrated. But… securing CICD best practices is an emerging, essential, yet little understood practice for DevOps teams and their Cloud Service Providers. The only way to get CICD to work in a highly secure environment takes collaboration, patience and persistence. Building CICD in the cloud requires rigorous ar...
Sanjeev Sharma Joins November 11-13, 2018 @DevOpsSummit at @CloudEXPO New York Faculty. Sanjeev Sharma is an internationally known DevOps and Cloud Transformation thought leader, technology executive, and author. Sanjeev's industry experience includes tenures as CTO, Technical Sales leader, and Cloud Architect leader. As an IBM Distinguished Engineer, Sanjeev is recognized at the highest levels of IBM's core of technical leaders.
Headquartered in Plainsboro, NJ, Synametrics Technologies has provided IT professionals and computer systems developers since 1997. Based on the success of their initial product offerings (WinSQL and DeltaCopy), the company continues to create and hone innovative products that help its customers get more from their computer applications, databases and infrastructure. To date, over one million users around the world have chosen Synametrics solutions to help power their accelerated business or per...
One of the biggest challenges with adopting a DevOps mentality is: new applications are easily adapted to cloud-native, microservice-based, or containerized architectures - they can be built for them - but old applications need complex refactoring. On the other hand, these new technologies can require relearning or adapting new, oftentimes more complex, methodologies and tools to be ready for production. In his general session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Chris Brown, Solutions Marketi...
At the keynote this morning we spoke about the value proposition of Nutanix, of having a DevOps culture and a mindset, and the business outcomes of achieving agility and scale, which everybody here is trying to accomplish," noted Mark Lavi, DevOps Solution Architect at Nutanix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
We are seeing a major migration of enterprises applications to the cloud. As cloud and business use of real time applications accelerate, legacy networks are no longer able to architecturally support cloud adoption and deliver the performance and security required by highly distributed enterprises. These outdated solutions have become more costly and complicated to implement, install, manage, and maintain.SD-WAN offers unlimited capabilities for accessing the benefits of the cloud and Internet. ...
Bill Schmarzo, author of "Big Data: Understanding How Data Powers Big Business" and "Big Data MBA: Driving Business Strategies with Data Science," is responsible for setting the strategy and defining the Big Data service offerings and capabilities for EMC Global Services Big Data Practice. As the CTO for the Big Data Practice, he is responsible for working with organizations to help them identify where and how to start their big data journeys. He's written several white papers, is an avid blogge...
HyperConvergence came to market with the objective of being simple, flexible and to help drive down operating expenses. It reduced the footprint by bundling the compute/storage/network into one box. This brought a new set of challenges as the HyperConverged vendors are very focused on their own proprietary building blocks. If you want to scale in a certain way, let's say you identified a need for more storage and want to add a device that is not sold by the HyperConverged vendor, forget about it...
Deep learning has been very successful in social sciences and specially areas where there is a lot of data. Trading is another field that can be viewed as social science with a lot of data. With the advent of Deep Learning and Big Data technologies for efficient computation, we are finally able to use the same methods in investment management as we would in face recognition or in making chat-bots. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Gaurav Chakravorty, co-founder and Head of Strategy Development ...
As DevOps methodologies expand their reach across the enterprise, organizations face the daunting challenge of adapting related cloud strategies to ensure optimal alignment, from managing complexity to ensuring proper governance. How can culture, automation, legacy apps and even budget be reexamined to enable this ongoing shift within the modern software factory?
DXWorldEXPO LLC, the producer of the world's most influential technology conferences and trade shows has announced the 22nd International CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO "Early Bird Registration" is now open. Register for Full Conference "Gold Pass" ▸ Here (Expo Hall ▸ Here)