U.S. Small Business Optimism Up In August
Small-business owners gained confidence in the U.S. economy last month, outpacing expectations, according to data from a survey compiled by the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB).
The NFIB Optimism Index rose 1.4 points in August to 100.2, slightly above the historical 46-year average. Seven of the 10 Index components improved, two declined, and one was unchanged. The NFIB Uncertainty Index increased two points in August to 90, the second-highest reading since 2017.
“Small businesses are working hard to recover from the state shutdowns and effects of Covid-19,” said NFIB Chief Economist Bill Dunkelberg. “We are seeing areas of improvement in the small business economy, as job openings and plans to hire are increasing, but many small businesses are still struggling and are uncertain about what the future will hold.”
Other key findings include:
- Earnings trends over the past three months improved seven points to a net negative 25% reporting higher earnings.
- Job openings increased three points to 33% of firms with at least one unfilled position.
- The percent of owners thinking it’s a good time to expand increased one point to 12%.
- Real sales expectations in the next three months decreased two points to a net 3%
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