Tuesday, October 08, 2019

Small Business Optimism Index Decreased in September

by Calculated Risk on 10/08/2019 08:49:00 AM

CR Note: Most of this survey is noise, but there is some information, especially on the labor market and the "Single Most Important Problem".

From the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB): September 2019 Report: Small Business Optimism Declines but Remains Historically High

The small business Optimism Index maintained a historically solid reading, but took a dip in September, falling 1.3 points to 101.8.
..
Job creation was firm in September, with an average addition of 0.10 workers per firm compared to 0.19 in August. Net job creation has faded steadily since February’s 0.52 workers per firm to 0.1, no surprise as “finding qualified workers” to fill job openings hit a record high of 27 percent in August. Finding qualified workers remains a top problem, with 23 percent reporting it as their number one problem, down 4 points from August’s record high.
emphasis added
Small Business Optimism IndexClick on graph for larger image.

This graph shows the small business optimism index since 1986.

The index decreased to 101.9 in September.

Note: Usually small business owners complain about taxes and regulations (currently 2nd and 3rd on the "Single Most Important Problem" list).  However, during the recession, "poor sales" was the top problem. Now the difficulty of finding qualified workers is a top problem.