Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Small Business Optimism Index decreased in March, "Difficulty of finding qualified workers" is Top Problem

by Bill McBride on 4/10/2018 09:40:00 AM

From the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB): March 2018 Report: Small Business Optimism Index

The 104.7 March reading, down from 107.6 in February, remains among the highest in survey history and for the first time since 1982, taxes received the fewest number of votes as the number one problem.
..
Job creation remained solid in the small business sector as owners reported a seasonally-adjusted average employment change per firm of 0.36 workers, one of the best readings in survey history. ... Twenty-one percent of owners cited the difficulty of finding qualified workers as their Single Most Important Business Problem, exceeding the percentage citing taxes or regulations. Thirty-five percent of all owners reported job openings they could not fill in the current period.
emphasis added
Small Business Optimism Index Click on graph for larger image.

This graph shows the small business optimism index since 1986.

The index decreased to 104.7 in March.

Note: Usually small business owners complain about taxes and regulations.  However, during the recession, "poor sales" was the top problem.

Now the difficulty of finding qualified workers is the top problem.