Small Business Optimism Declined to 89.5 in June
Washington, DC, July 12, 2022-The NFIB Small Business Optimism Index dropped 3.6 points in June to 89.5, marking the sixth consecutive month below the 48-year average of 98. Small business owners expecting better business conditions over the next six months decreased seven points to a net negative 61%, the lowest level recorded in the 48-year survey. Expectations for better conditions have worsened every month this year.
Inflation continues to be a top problem for small businesses with 34% of owners reporting it was their single most important problem in operating their business, an increase of six points from May and the highest level since quarter four in 1980.
“As inflation continues to dominate business decisions, small business owners’ expectations for better business conditions have reached a new low,” said NFIB chief economist Bill Dunkelberg. “On top of the immediate challenges facing small business owners including inflation and worker shortages, the outlook for economic policy is not encouraging either as policy talks have shifted to tax increases and more regulations.”
Key findings include:
* The net percent of owners who expect real sales to be higher decreased 13 points from May to a net negative 28%, a severe decline.
* Fifty percent of owners reported job openings that could not be filled, down one point from May, but historically very high.
* The net percent of owners raising average selling prices decreased three points to a net 69% seasonally adjusted, following May’s record high reading.
As reported in NFIB’s monthly jobs report, owners’ plans to fill open positions remain elevated, with a seasonally adjusted net 19% planning to create new jobs in the next three months, but down seven points from May. Ninety-four percent of those hiring or trying to hire reported few or no qualified applicants for the positions they were trying to fill.