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Pessimism prevails in many published polls as the year unfurls. The World Economic Forum says 54% of the 345 global policy makers, academics and business leaders it polled expect a geopolitical disruption with global repercussions in the next year as compared to 36% who said so three months ago. Bankers in a Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association Economic Roundtable survey say the European debt crisis, regulatory uncertainty and Washington’s political impasse have lowered their outlook on 2012 U.S. economic growth to 2.2% from 3.1%. The students of the dismal science polled by the National Association for Business Economics forecast U.S. GDP growth at a more optimistic 2.4%. Meanwhile, more than 90% of the execs surveyed by the Association for Financial Professionals expect more earnings uncertainty over the next five years, with 70% predicting regulatory risk will impact earnings, while 57% cite supply chain disruptions.

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