Guilderland Chamber of Commerce members predict things will get worse before they get better, according to the results of an annual business survey.
Chamber members participated in a study conducted by Marvin and Company and the University at Albany School of Business, and many said they are not expecting the national financial outlook to improve in 2009.
Chamber Executive Director Kathy Burbank said times are tough, and even the chamber is looking for ways to save.
We're looking to save money in ways we've never looked at before, she said.
The Business Climate Survey "asks local and Capital Region chamber members about their overall concerns for the upcoming year as well as their prediction on how their own businesses will fair for the year," according to information provided by the GCC.
Chamber members cited several concerns, according to the GCC, in order of importance. At the top of the list was the national economy, taxes and health-care costs.
The survey reported 80.4 percent of chamber members believe the Capital District's economy is stagnant or recessionary, with only 19.6 percent believing it is prospering or recovering; 42.3 percent said the Capital District will "experience little or no growth," in the next several years.
Kevin McCoy, managing director of Marvin and Company, said his biggest concern is predictions from chamber members from the entire Capital District that business will not improve. He said only 30 percent are expecting to do better than last year, a number that typically is closer to 50 or 60 percent.
They're significantly more pessimistic this year," McCoy said. "More pessimistic than they've ever been in the past."
The GCC offered programs such as group energy purchasing in response to the members concerns.
The 2008 survey listed the biggest concerns of businesses as taxes, insurance and rising supply and gas costs.