Did you know? The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) released a report, based on a survey of small businesses, that the small business optimism index gained 0.4 points in February. What does this mean?
Small Business Confidence Rises AGAIN for the 6th Consecutive Month
Proceed with caution, as this index is still historically low. Focusing on the positive, though, is to see that this continued increase is a sure sign that recovery is most likely to continue (although at a very conservative pace). To put things in perspective, this index is lower than February 2011, but it is still the SECOND HIGHEST READING SINCE DECEMBER 2007 (which, as you know, marks the beginning of the recession).
Beyond actual numbers, the NFIB speaks to what is on small business owners’ mind. Small business owners are optimistic about future sales growth (which shows they have some faith in the economy). However, they remain unsure about the outlook for business conditions, which makes the reading a bit confusing, even though it’s easy to agree it is heading in the right direction. The simplest way to describe this is that, although small businesses are seeing some hope, they are still overly cautious in these hopes, as their confidence can be easily broken in this economy.
And what is the top problem for these small businesses? A whopping 22% state that it’s poor sales (which was the same as January, as well). Get the full report here.