Australia's CFOs are happier with this year's budget than the one last year

The federal budget announced tax breaks for small business which analysts predict will cause a spike in the sale of electronics. Scott Barbour/Getty Images

Australia’s chief financial officers are more optimistic now than this time last year with a more accepting view of the May federal budget, government policy and leadership.

Deloitte’s second quarter CFO survey report shows the finance directors feel more optimistic now than they did three months ago, despite worrying external signs from China and Europe.

However, three-quarters of CFOs still think the rate of fiscal repair proposed by the 2015 budget is too slow.

But the view on policy uncertainty and leadership instability has shifted from starkly negative, where it had been for a good 12 months, to neutral.

The majority of CFOs believe the 2015-16 budget will have a positive impact on the Australian economy.

This chart compares the CFO views about the 2015 budget compared to 2014:

Source: Deloitte CFO survey

“This mirrors the shift in both government language and priorities – away from tough but fair and toward energising small businesses,” the survey report says.

“It is perhaps this focus on small to medium enterprises that explains more tepid expectations of the budget’s impact on company growth at the top end of town.”

The CFO Survey targets Australia’s largest public companies. “That said, the response is still encouraging, with 42% saying the impact will be positive, and only 4% responding to the contrary,” the report says.

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