September's Small Business Optimism Index Beats Economists' Estimates
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In August, the Small Business Optimism Index came in at 88.1. September, however, defied economists' estimates coming in at 88.9. This index concluded a six-month decline, yet while sales expectations improved from last month, the NFIB cautions that these numbers are nothing to write home about.
Business Insider reports:
“An increase in consumer spending would be the best imaginable stimulus right now, not gimmicky Washington policies,” said NFIB Chief Economist Bill Dunkelberg. “Promising temporary tax cuts financed by permanent income tax increases will not help many small-business owners who pay taxes based on personal—not corporate—tax rates. The key to economic recovery is restoring the confidence of consumers; only then will small businesses begin to see the sales they need to expand. If consumers fear the path we are on, then ‘less is more’ policies that reduce the size of government will increase confidence.”
Twenty-eight percent of small-business owners reported that poor sales is still their top business problem. In fact, poor sales has been the top business problem for small-business owners for the past three years. The net percent of owners expecting better business conditions in six months was a negative 22 percent, up 4 points from August, but 32 percentage points lower than January. Not seasonally adjusted, 38 percent expect deterioration and only 9 percent expect improvement.
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