Small Business Optimism Slid 2.8 Points to 99.7 in July

Washington, DC, August 10, 2021-The NFIB Small Business Optimism Index decreased in July to 99.7, a decrease of 2.8 points, reversing June’s 2.9-point gain. 

Six of the ten components declined, three improved, and one was unchanged. The NFIB Uncertainty Index decreased seven points to 76, indicating owners’ views are held with more certainty than in earlier months.

“Small business owners are losing confidence in the strength of the economy and expect a slowdown in job creation,” said NFIB chief economist Bill Dunkelberg. “As owners look for qualified workers, they are also reporting that supply chain disruptions are having an impact on their businesses. Ultimately, owners could sell more if they could acquire more supplies and inventories from their supply chains.”

Other key findings include:

* Sales expectations over the next three months decreased 11 points to a net negative 4% of owners.

* Owners expecting better business conditions over the next six months decreased eight points to a net negative 20%.

* Earnings trends over the past three months decreased eight points to a net negative 13%.

As reported in NFIB’s monthly jobs report, 49% of owners reported job openings that could not be filled, a 48-year record high. Owners’ plans to fill open positions remain at record high levels, with a seasonally adjusted net 27% planning to create new jobs in the next three months, down one point from June’s record high reading.