Small-business optimism highest in a decade

From staff reports

Small-business optimism rose to the highest point in a decade, as an index produced by Wells Fargo & Co. and Gallup jumped 11 points to 106 in the third quarter.

The jump in optimism was driven by continued improvements in how business owners rate their current financial situation and revenue, along with their outlook.

The increase in optimism was driven by several factors, including:

  • Strong financial situation – Seventy-six percent said their current financial situation is very good or somewhat good, up from 73 percent in April.
  • Healthy revenue – For the second quarter in a row, almost half — 46 percent — said their business’ revenue increased over the past 12 months, up from 41 percent a year ago.
  • Ease of obtaining credit – Almost half of small business owners — 48 percent — said credit will be somewhat easy or very easy to obtain over the next 12 months.
  • More hiring – Twenty-one percent said the number of jobs at their company increased over the past 12 months, up from 19 percent in April.

 

“Our latest survey tells us that small-business owners continue to feel confident about their current situation and are optimistic about the future,” said Mark Vitner, managing director and senior economist for Wells Fargo.

“As the economy strengthens, small-business owners are reporting improvements in their day-to-day operations, particularly their sales. With their finances in better shape and fewer business owners expressing concern about the regulatory environment, more businesses are planning to boost capital spending and hiring. It’s reassuring to see these improvements and to see that optimism has returned to its highest level since early 2007.”

When businesses were asked about their biggest challenges, hiring and retaining staff topped the list.

Small-business optimism highest in a decade

Small business optimism rose to the highest point in a decade, as an index produced by Wells Fargo & Co. and Gallup jumped 11 points to 106 in the third quarter.

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