By: Kheng-Liang Tan

According to a survey report by Thomson Reuters, companies within the Asia-Pacific region are more optimistic than ever despite volatile oil prices and uncertainty from November’s US Election.

However, the 17 Singaporean companies which participated in the survey painted a contrasting picture: the Business Sentiment index tumbled 25 points from 63 to 38.

Not only does this make Singapore companies the most pessimistic for the future outlook, the drop is the steepest among all economies surveyed.

Factors cited by Singaporean companies include a labor shortage and a flagging oil and gas sector. In addition, trade numbers show that exports have stagnated.

As a benchmark, a reading below 50 indicates an overall negative outlook.