Financial experts say America's economic recovery is gaining traction.
A new survey from the National Association for Business Economics finds that economists are more hopeful about overall economic growth, the job market, and demand for companies' products and services by many measures than they have been since the start of the recession.
The survey found that business decisions are now "being driven by the fundamentals of an improving economy," said Shawn DuBravac, an economist with the Consumer Electronics Association who analyzed the findings.
In the latest survey, 82 percent of those surveyed expect the economy to grow two to four percent this year, up from 54 percent in October.
About one-third of those surveyed said hiring had improved at their companies, compared with 6 percent who said workers were laid off.
The number of economists who saw hiring by their firms increasing over the next six months was 42 percent, compared with 7 percent who expected to lay off workers.
The quarterly survey includes the views of 84 economists for private companies and trade groups who are NABE members. The survey was conducted between Dec. 17 and Jan. 5.