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Wells Fargo Securities Economics Group: Small Business Confidence Rises Modestly

Source: Wells Fargo Securities, LLC Economics Group

Confidence Rises Slightly in April

  • Small Business Confidence rose 2.6 points, as slightly more firms said they plan to hire workers over the next three months. Despite that rise, job openings and the share of firms adding jobs over the past three months were both unchanged.

  • The net share of business owners expecting general business conditions to improve over the next six months rose 13 points to -15, which is the best reading since just prior to the election.

Business Owners See Improvement Off a Low Base

  • Slightly more business owners expect their sales to improve. Sales expectations for the next three months rose 8 points to +4, which is the best reading since last year. Actual sales over the past three months improved less, rising 3 points to -4.

  • While improving, the hiring plans index remains historically weak and a high proportion of firms continue to report they have few or no qualified applicants for their current job openings.

Charts: NFIB Small Business Optimism, Small Businesses Reporting Higher Sales, Firms Expecting Economy to Improve,Small Business Hiring Plans, Source: National Federation of Independent Business and Wells Fargo Securities, LLC

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