INFO VISUALIZATION: Slate has a great piece poking fun at the idea that CEO Confidence (as measured by The Chief Executive Group) is any better at predicting the future state of the economy than any other index. In fact, they find that you're better off following the Dow Jones, since CEO's tend to be a bit behind the curve.
Here's a great quote from the article, written by Daniel Gross:
CEOs don't seem to have a better handle on the economy's prospects than the average mutual fund investor. CEOs seem to be slow on the uptake. According to the CEO Confidence Watch, in the third quarter of 2003, when the economy was cooking at an 8.2 percent annual clip, only about 10 percent of CEOs described business conditions as "good." Today, with the economy growing at half that pace and with interest rates on the rise, some 44.6 percent do.
View the report (PDF Alert).