From the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB): Small Business Optimism Dips Lower Before Election
The net percent of small business owners who expect better business conditions in the next six months jumped 12 points last month, according to the NFIB Small Business Economic Trends Report (SBET), released today, but that gain was erased by significantly weaker inventories and hard-to-fill job openings.
The Index of Small Business Optimism fell 0.3 points to 94.1, another monthly decline, and four points below the 40 year average of 98. …
Fifty-eight percent reported hiring or trying to hire (up 2 points), but 48 percent reported few or no qualified applicants for the positions they were trying to fill. Seventeen percent of owners cited the difficulty of finding qualified workers as their single most important business problem. This issue ranks second behind taxes but tied with the cost of regulation and red tape.
This graph shows the small business optimism index since 1986.
The index decreased to 94.1 in September.