NFIB Small Business Optimism – August 2018

The August NFIB Small Business Optimism report was released today, September 11, 2018. The headline of the Economic Trends report is “Small Business Optimism Shatters Record Previously Set 35 Years Ago.”

The Index of Small Business Optimism increased in August by .9 points to 108.8.

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

The August survey showed:

  • Job creation plans and unfilled job openings both set new records.
  • The percentage of small business owners saying it is a good time to expand tied the May 2018 all-time high.
  • Inventory investment plans were the strongest since 2005 and capital spending plans the highest since 2007.


A net 10 percent of all owners (seasonally adjusted) reported higher nominal sales in the past three months compared to the prior three months, up two points. August is the ninth consecutive strong month of reported sales gains after years of low or negative numbers. The net percent of owners planning to build inventories rose six points to a record net 10 percent, the 14th positive reading in the past 22 months. The frequency of reports of positive profit trends rose two points to a net one percent reporting quarter on quarter profit improvements, the second highest reading in the survey’s 45-year history.

Here is a chart of the NFIB Small Business Optimism chart, as seen in the September 11 Doug Short post titled “NFIB Small Business Survey:  Small Business Optimism…“:

NFIB Small Business Optimism

Further details regarding small business conditions can be seen in the full August 2018 NFIB Small Business Economic Trends (pdf) report.


The Special Note summarizes my overall thoughts about our economic situation

SPX at 2883.37 as this post is written