New Survey: Small Businesses Confident Despite Little Growth in Hiring
Wednesday, September 13th, 2017
The National Small Business Association released its 2017 Mid-Year Economic Report where the small-business outlook on the overall economy is at its highest point in seven years despite growing frustration over elected officials' inability to enact needed reforms.
"For the first half of 2017, we've seen record highs in small-business confidence and outlook, however our most recent report shows more muted projections in hiring and revenue growth, " stated NSBA President and CEO Todd McCracken. "The absence of any meaningful legislating is a driver of changes in anticipated growth, and is the reason why small businesses believe the first thing Congress and the administration need to address is ending the partisan gridlock."
Among the most positive findings: 45 percent of small businesses say today's economy is better than six months ago; 83 percent are confident in the future of their business; and the number of small-business owners who said "economic uncertainty" was a significant challenge to the future growth and survival of their business dropped to 36 percent, the lowest this indicator has been since February 2008.
Unfortunately, there were less-positive results as well: there was a drop in the number of small businesses anticipating economic expansion in the next 12 months; slightly fewer businesses reported revenue growth in the past year; and even fewer small-business owners reported hiring in the past 12 months or plans to do so in the coming 12 months.
"In this survey, we also asked several energy-related questions and found that the majority of small-business owners are concerned about future energy costs," stated NSBA Chair Pedro Alfonso of Dynamic Concepts, Inc. in Washington, D.C. "As such, the majority of small firms annually review their energy costs and take steps to reduce their energy consumption."
The 2017 Mid-Year Economic Report was conducted on-line July 24 through Aug. 14, 2017 among 1,134 small-business owners.