Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Small Business Optimism Grew in March

The NFIB’s Small Business Optimism index improved to 93.4 from 91.4 the month prior. It does not fully offset February’s loss. The gains were mixed, as six of the index components improved, two remained unchanged, and two were lower.

Financing continues to be the least cited concern holding back small business conditions, with 2% of respondents citing it as the single more important problem. Government requirement and red tape remained in the top spot at 21%. However, taxes joined in a tie for the top spot, increasing 2%. Poor sales dropped 2%, remaining in third.

The details of the report improved from the past month. Six of the ten index components grew, improving a combined 22%. The expectation for real sales to grow increased the most by 9% from the month prior. Plans to increase inventories and current inventories grew a combined 10%. Plan to increase employment dropped the most, losing 2%.

Current job openings remained the same as the previous month, showing no improvement. Job creation plans drooped 2 points, after dropping 5 points the month prior. On a positive note, employment gains were stronger. Firms hired an average 0.18 workers in March.

Read the NFIB release.

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