The National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB) released a survey of small business owners earlier in October which illuminated serious concerns on America’s future. According to the survey, 63 percent of small business owners believe that the United States is on the wrong track, 71 percent are “very concerned with the size and growth of the federal deficit, and 67 percent believe the overall business climate is either fair or poor. These numbers are concerning, as small businesses account for 99.7 percent of employer firms and 42.9 percent of private sector employment.

 

The survey paints a bleak picture of future economic conditions on Main Street just as one of the most wide open and controversial presidential primaries in history is beginning to heat up. Business owners have serious issues with the federal deficit, the affordability of healthcare for small businesses, and tax rates. These will all be key issues in the upcoming election. Holly Wade, Research Director at the NFIB, said, “Every candidate for every office will talk about small business for the next 13 months. The real question is whether they’re listening to small business.”

 

 

Despite serious concerns about the direction in which the business environment is headed, small businesses are performing at consistently healthy levels. The NFIB’s Small Business Optimism Index measures small business owners’ optimism from a more practical revenue and sales perspective, and it actually increased slightly month over month from August to September.

 

It is often hard for the small business community to have its voice heard over the clamoring of big business. However, as the situation of small business owners has soured, it is time for policy makers to refocus their priorities.

 

Has America fallen off the path towards economic growth? Do small businesses need to do more to have their opinions voiced? Feel free to leave a comment or find me on Twitter @Andrew_Morse4