Firms’ Inflation Expectations And Concerns Regarding A Recession

The Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta publishes a monthly report titled “Business Inflation Expectations” (BIE) that contains statistics from a survey of regional businesses’ views on various factors that impact profitability.  These factors include unit costs, unit cost expectations, sales levels, pricing, profit margins, and other factors.

As described on the site:

“Approximately 300 panelists receive the survey each month. Panelists represent businesses of various sizes headquartered within the Sixth District, which encompasses Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and sections of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee. Panelists range from executives of large corporations to owner-operators of small businesses. The industry composition of the panel roughly reflects the makeup of the national economy. Nevertheless, survey responses are weighted by industry shares of national gross domestic product.”

An excerpt from the July 2022 BIE Survey dated July 13, 2022 (involving 172 firms responding):

  • Inflation expectations: Firms’ year-ahead inflation expectations remain relatively unchanged at 3.7 percent, on average.
  • Current economic environment: “Compared to normal,” sales levels and profit margins remain relatively unchanged. Year-over-year unit cost growth slightly increased at 4.4 percent, on average.
  • Quarterly question: Firms’ sales gap (percentage below “normal” unit sales levels) decreased significantly to 2.2 percent below normal. Small firms are more affected by the decrease of their unit sales levels, with 5.1 percent below “normal.”
  • Special question: Firms were asked about their current sales levels compared to pre-COVID. They were also questioned regarding their expectations about changes sales levels during the next 12 months. In addition to these questions, they were asked about recession or potential recession. A breakdown of the results can be found in the special question section below.

The report also includes other questions and a variety of charts and tables depicting respondents’ answers.


RevSD, LLC offers the above commentary for informational purposes only, and does not necessarily agree with all (or any) of the views expressed by these outside parties.

—– is published by RevSD, LLC.  RevSD, LLC is a management consulting firm and strategic advisory that focuses on the analysis of current and future business conditions, and given these conditions, offers corporations and businesses advice, strategies, and actionable methods on how to optimally increase revenues and profitability.