Small Business Optimism Index Rose to 99.8 in April

Washington, DC, May 11, 2021-The NFIB Small Business Optimism Index rose to 99.8 in April, an increase of 1.6 points from March. The Optimism Index has increased 4.8 points over the past three months since January but a record 44% of owners reported job openings they could not be filled.

“Small business owners are seeing a growth in sales but are stunted by not having enough workers,” said NFIB chief economist Bill Dunkelberg. “Finding qualified employees remains the biggest challenge for small businesses and is slowing economic growth. Owners are raising compensation, offering bonuses and benefits to attract the right employees.”

Other key findings include:

* Eight of the ten Index components improved and two declined.

* The NFIB Uncertainty Index decreased one point to 80.

* Earnings trends over the past three months improved eight points to a net negative 7%.

* Owners have plans to invest in their businesses as the percentage of those planning to make capital expenditures in the next three to six months increased seven points to 27%.

* The percent of owners expecting better business conditions over the next six months fell seven points to a net negative 15%, surprisingly glum.