In their global survey, PwC has asked 550 investment professionals about their views on the impact of globalisation and technology on growth, talent, trust and the society. Thereby, investors’ optimism has more than doubled within the last twelve months. While 22 percent expected global economic growth to improve in 2016, 45 percent of investors and analysts do believe so now. While investors’ confidence varies from industry to industry, CEOs are especially confident about their own company’s opportunities and revenue growth prospects.
However, investment professionals acknowledge that companies face threats, especially from geopolitical uncertainty (85%). Other issues that concern them are protectionism (78%), the future of the Eurozone (77%), social instability (73%) and cyber threats (73%). CEOs, on the other hand, rank geopolitical uncertainty only as the fourth biggest threat (74%). They are more concerned about uncertain economic growth (82%), over-regulation (80%) and the availability of key skills (77%).
Many investment professionals believe globalisation to make the movement of capital, people, goods and information easier, to establish universal connectivity and to create a skilled and educated workforce. While they do not believe the process of globalisation to stop, they do state that globalisation has not closed the gap between the rich and the poor, has not adverted climate change and resource scarcity, and does not improve the fairness of the global tax system. While investors and CEOs perceive the advantages of globalisation to the same extent, investors are more concerned about the disadvantages than CEOs.
Investors believe that numerous aspects of today’s work will be disrupted, replaces or at least fixed by new technologies, with artificial intelligence and automation being expected to have the biggest impact. 85 percent of investors believe that company headcount decreases due to new technologies and that adaptability, creativity and innovation are important skills to corporations.