>Tatum/Roulston Report

January 10, 2011

>This months Tatum Survey clearly reflects the improvement in outlook. From all of our discussions with managements one thing is clear. The election didn’t actually change much, but it sure changed business attitudes. The results of outlook are substantial over the last two months in expectations especially for hiring and backlog growth. In addition capital spending looks to be another area of optimism.

On the other hand multiple conversations this week with bankers are not heartening. The Tatum Survey reflects that access to bank lending is showing little improvement and the banks are confirming that they have real estate problems that are not going away anytime soon. This is a heavy weight on capital access. Though many companies are flush with cash, the reality is that business formations, household formations and unemployment reflect a two year period of few options for those not established. This trend is stubbornly reflecting a two tier economy. Mining, farming, transportation, manufacturing, energy and many downstream channels in these industries are improving and some at record levels. With personal savings at still relatively high levels and disposable income higher the consumer is in recovery but their balance sheet just does not seem pretty.

We believe there is relative strength and good momentum fed by some optimism of Washington movement. In the past the hope usually does not necessarily lead to reality. That having been said there is improved growth, there is optimism and those two factors should never be underestimated.

Tatum LLC is a nationwide firm specializing in the providing financial and information technology services and executive fulfillment to companies across the country. This joint effort with Tatum is a unique partnership that will provide a differentiated view of business trends – The Tatum/ Roulston Report.

To read the full survey click here.

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