WASHINGTON — U.S. CEO confidence increased in the second quarter on the back of improved economic conditions and a more optimistic outlook, according to a Conference Board survey released Wednesday.

"CEOs are more upbeat about short-term growth prospects in most markets, including Europe, and expectations for India and China remained positive, but flat," Conference Board Director of Economic Indicators Lynn Franco said in a statement.

The Conference Board Measure of CEO Confidence rose to 62 in the second quarter from 54 in the first. A reading above 50 indicates more positive responses than negative ones.

The survey, which was conducted between mid-May to mid-June, found that 60% of participants expect economic conditions will improve over the next six months - up from 32% in the first quarter. Sixty percent said they believe current conditions are better than six months ago, which is up from 36%.

"CEO Confidence, much like consumer confidence, posted a strong gain in the second quarter," Franco said.

While CEOs were more positive about current economic conditions in the U.S. and Japan they were much more pessimistic about China. Views on Europe, India and Brazil were about the same in the second quarter as they were in the first, the Conference Board said.

Expectations for future growth was also positive for the U.S., Japan, Brazil and Europe, while China was about the same.

Market News International is a real-time global news service for fixed-income and foreign exchange market professionals. See www.marketnews.com.

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