Small Business Optimism Improves Slightly

The National Federation of Independent Business small business optimism index inched up 0.6 point in July to 94.1, the second highest reading this year.

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Small business optimism has held up relatively well for the past three months, said IHS Global Insight analysts.

In July, small business optimism inched up due to increased optimism on hiring intentions, good time to expand and higher sales. However, small businesses are more pessimistic on the economic outlook, easing of credit conditions, and higher selling prices.

“Interestingly, small business has had a seemingly consistent problem on filling job positions this year, but their plans on hiring have varied. This could be a problem of job matching or wage offers,” said Chris G. Christopher, Jr., IHS Director Consumer Economics.

He added that this report has some good news and some bad news. The bad news is that small business is more pessimistic on the U.S. economy. The good news is that small business intends to hire more people and expects higher sales.

“On balance, the good news outweighs the bad news since small business hires are extremely important to overall job growth and economic expansion,” said Christopher.

Other highlights contained in the report:

●    The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) small business optimism index inched up 0.6 point in July to 94.1, the second highest reading this year.
●    The index components for hiring intentions (up 2 points) and higher sales expectations (up 2 points) also moved up.
●    The index components that took a hit in July were higher selling prices (down 4 points), expect a better economy (down 2 points), and easing of credit conditions (down 1 point).

About the Author

Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at [email protected]

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