NFIB Small Business Optimism – October 2013

The October NFIB Small Business Optimism report was released today, October 8.  The headline of the Press Release is “Small Businesses Skeptical About Future; Optimism Dips.”  The subtitle is “Too early to measure impact of the ‘shut-down’ but economic outlook is depressed.”

The Index of Small Business Optimism decreased .2 points in September to 93.9.

Here are some excerpts from the Press Release that I find particularly notable (but don’t necessarily agree with) :

Twenty-four (24) percent of owners surveyed in September reported cited regulations and red tape as their No. 1 business problem, 18 percent cited taxes, and 17 percent cited “poor sales”. Only 2 percent reported that financing was their top business problem.


Good Time to Expand. In September, only 8 percent characterized the current period as a good time to expand (up 2 points). The net percent of owners expecting better business conditions in six months was a net negative 10 percent, 8 points worse than August’s reading.


Inflation. Fourteen (14) percent of the NFIB owners surveyed reported reducing their average selling prices in the past three months (down 2 points), and 14 percent reported price increases (down 3 points). The net percent of owners raising average selling prices was 1 percent, down 1 point. As for prospective price increases, 21 percent plan on raising average prices in the next few months (up 1 point), and 2 percent plan reductions (down 1 point). A net 19 percent plan price hikes, up 1 point.

Here is a chart of the NFIB Small Business Optimism chart, as seen in Doug Short’s October 8 post titled “Small Business Sentiment ‘Basically Unchanged’” :

(click on chart to enlarge image)

Dshort 10-8-13 NFIB-optimism-index

Further details regarding small business conditions can be seen in the Small Business Economic Trends document as well as the October 2013 NFIB Small Business Economic Trends report (pdf).


The Special Note summarizes my overall thoughts about our economic situation

SPX at 1655.45 as this post is written