Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Small-Business Owners Remain Cautious

The National Federation of Independent Business’ Small Business Optimism index fell 1.6 points in June, marking its first drop since February, Wells Fargo Securities’ senior economist Mark Vitner said in a recent report.

The bulk of the decline was due to a 10-percentage point slide in expectations for business conditions, signaling that more business owners see conditions worsening over the next six months than see them improving.

Business owners were also slightly less upbeat on sales, with the expectations index falling 4 percentage points to 11% in June.

Frustrations with burdensome regulations remain a bone of contention with small business owners. Concerns about the cost and availability of insurance continue to edge back following the rollout of the Affordable Care Act, according to the report.

Despite their worries, businesses appear to be hiring, the report said.

Firms planning to increase payrolls rose 2 percentage points to 12%. Job openings increased, as did concerns about the quality of labor, perhaps signaling a tighter job market, the report said.

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Kevin Minton
Chief Executive Boards International

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