Small-Business Optimism Pulls Back In June

After a three-month run that hit a post-recession high, a leading indicator of small-business growth fell a bit in June. The NFIB Optimism Index, from the National Federation of Independent Business, fell 1.6 points to 95.

The index had risen to 96.6 in May, the the highest reading since September 2007.  That level was still far below readings that have normally accompanied an expansion. 

In June, job components improved, but capital outlays and planned spending faded along with expectations for improving business conditions. 

“The only two index components that increased in June were labor market indicators: the percent of owners with job openings and the percent planning to create new jobs in the coming months,” said NFIB chief economist Bill Dunkelberg.

“While reports of actual net job creation per firm were positive, consumer and business owner optimism remain low, with both spending growth and sales expectations weak.  This means there are more jobs but not much more output.”

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