Business leaders mixed on outlook for Illinois

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Illinois business leaders are almost equally divided on whether the Illinois economy in 2014 will improve, stay the same or worsen, according to a new survey from BMO Harris Bank.

Of the business execs and decision makers surveyed, 35 percent expect things in the state to improve this year, 35 percent expect no change and 30 percent anticipate the Illinois economy to worsen. Their outlook for the U.S. economy is better, with 50 percent expecting improvement and 25 percent expecting things to hold steady, according to the BMO Harris Bank Survey: 2014 Business Outlook.

The business leaders were more confident about prospects for their own operations. Forty-six percent of businesses expect to expand in 2014 and 40 percent expect to stay the same.

“Illinois is home to a vast array of strong, efficient companies which weathered the economic storm over the past five years and are in a position to grow,” Dave Casper, BMO Harris Bank executive vice president and head of commercial banking, said in a prepared statement.

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