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Small Business Confidence Increases, but Expectations for Growth Not In-Line

Over the past six months, American small business owners’ confidence in the economy has reached some of its highest levels in the past five years, according to the Bank of America Small Business Owner Report. 52% of entrepreneurs now believe that the nation’s economy will be improving in the next 12-month period.

This represents a 21-point jump from levels recorded six months prior, and the increase in confidence is also reflected in the local economy confidence, which experienced a 13-point increase from 37% up to 50% since fall 2016.

However, the increased confidence in the economies has not translated to growth plans for the next five years or revenue expectations.  Plans to hire dipped to 18%, the lowest it has ever been in five years. These decreases are in spite of lessening worries in the minds of entrepreneurs, with the most notable changes occurring in concerns about the Stock market, health care costs, and the overall strength of the US dollar.

Sharon Miller, head of small business at Bank of America, commented that, “Although some uncertainty remains with respect to hiring and revenue, the increase in general optimism is certainly a promising indicator of potential growth for small businesses in 2017.”