Global business confidence is fragile. Sentiment remains strong by broad historical standards but has materially weakened since peaking this past summer; it is now as low as it has been since late 2013. The turmoil in global financial markets appears to be the main culprit behind the more cautious mood. Most notable is the slide in businesses’ assessments of present business conditions, with more negative than positive assessments for the first time since the Great Recession. More encouragingly, expectations regarding the economy’s performance this coming summer remain strong.