TORONTO, Nov. 4, 2016 /CNW/ - Plenty of uncertainty about the national economy lingers among professional accountants in leadership positions, according to a new survey conducted for Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada). The latest CPA Canada Business Monitor(Q3 2016) finds that half (50 per cent) of those surveyed are neutral about the prospects for the Canadian economy over the next 12 months, a result similar to the previous quarter. In addition, pessimism continues to run ahead of optimism. More than a quarter (29 per cent) of the business leaders are pessimistic about what lies ahead for the Canadian economy while 21 per cent are optimistic. Both those findings are similar to Q2 2016. For the eighth consecutive quarter, the price of oil is cited by the survey respondents as the number one challenge to growth of the Canadian economy. It was followed by the state of the U.S. economy."The upcoming U.S. election and the protectionist trade winds associated with it are likely factors contributing to doubt or hesitation here in Canada," says Joy Thomas, president and CEO of CPA Canada. "Not only is the future unclear regarding trade policies with the U.S. but there are other challenges including Canada's transition to a low-carbon economy and possible ramifications from the Brexit vote."