Cisco CEO Optimistic About the Economy

Cisco Systems CEO John Chambers was one of the first tech executives to predict that the recession–then limited to the financial sector–would spread to the rest of the economy. Now he’s among the first to say it’s on the way back.

The economy has started a “gradual recovery,” Chambers said Wednesday during a meeting with Wall Street Journal reporters and editors, echoing optimism he expressed when discussing Cisco’s fourth-quarter results in August. Chambers said that he bases his assessment of the economy on several factors, including the stock market, conversations with customers and the rate at which Cisco (CSCO) receives orders. Based on these criteria, he believes that the U.S. is coming out of the recession. He added that Asia seems to be picking up as well, but that he expects Europe to lag behind.

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