For immediate release

Contact: Daneil Mazone, Media Relations, 215-574-7163

Philadelphia, PA — A Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia survey of Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce members shows that business conditions improved in 2014 compared with 2013. Survey respondents expressed optimism that conditions will continue to improve in 2015.

The annual survey, now in its fifth year, offers a perspective on the region's economic competitiveness and the issues that will affect the business community in the coming year. The survey, which was conducted in December 2014, polled 125 chamber members. Elif Sen, Bank senior economic analyst, presented the results today at the chamber's Economic Outlook event at the Hyatt at The Bellevue in Philadelphia.

“About 74 percent of respondents are optimistic that conditions in the region will continue to improve in 2015”, said Sen. “More than 54 percent reported that they expect to hire more full-time permanent employees in 2015.”

Overall, respondents identified domestic competition, labor costs associated with employee benefits, and poor sales as their most critical business issues.

The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia helps formulate and implement monetary policy, supervises banks and bank and savings and loan holding companies, and provides financial services to depository institutions and the federal government. It is one of the 12 regional Reserve Banks that, together with the Board of Governors in Washington, D.C., make up the Federal Reserve System. The Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank serves eastern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey, and Delaware.