December 6, 2012 |
The job outlook at America's small businesses is the worst it's ever been, according to new research. Last month, 21% of small business owners said they expected to lower head count over the next six months - the highest percentage recorded by the Wells Fargo/Gallup Small Business Index since its launch in 2003. In July, the last time the data was compiled, just 10% of bosses said they planned to shrink employee ranks. More than six in 10 owners said they would keep their workforce steady, while 17% said they intended to boost hiring.
November 24, 2012 |
A day after shoppers surged into malls for Black Friday, local merchants around the country are welcoming them to Small Business Saturday. The shopping day, invented by American Express in 2010, is a nationwide effort to get customers to support neighborhood boutiques and mom-and-pop shops. Last year about 100 million shoppers visited small businesses on that day. Local merchants in Los Angeles got into the spirit on Saturday, sandwiched between the marathon shopping days of Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
December 11, 2012 |
American small business owners are in a sour mood, with optimism at one of its lowest levels since 1986, but don't blame Superstorm Sandy. It's the fiscal cliff's fault, according to a new report from the National Federation of Independent Business. The threat of major spending cuts and tax hikes in the new year has caused a forward-looking gauge of Main Street sentiment to plummet. The election and the looming implementation of President Obama's health coverage overhaul is also weighing on small business owners, according to the report.
January 8, 2013 |
California's insurance commissioner said an 11% rate increase for small businesses by Anthem Blue Cross is "unreasonable" because the company overstated its costs and improperly added fees related to the federal healthcare law. Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones also said Anthem, a unit of industry giant WellPoint Inc., was reaping excessive profits in California. But under state law the commissioner has no authority to block the rate increase from taking effect this month. "This is a huge loophole in California law and in the federal Affordable Care Act," Jones said.
April 5, 2013 |
More than half of small businesses are in favor of requiring all employers to comply with some kind of E-Verify system, even though a majority of them don't use it or have never heard of it, according to a national survey. The National Small Business Assn. interviewed nearly 300 businesses for its 2013 Workforce and Immigration Survey . It found that 17% employ immigrant workers and that 46% depend on workers with backgrounds in science, technology, engineering or mathematics.
July 7, 2012 |
Behind the weak job growth numbers and the uncertainty about the economic recovery, small-business owners see shrinking consumer confidence sapping demand for their products and services. Many small firms say they are barely staying afloat and won't hire until they see signs of more stability in the marketplace. That sentiment doesn't bode well for efforts to push the economy forward. Small business, the conventional engine of job growth, has been particularly active in the last two years in driving the recovery from the Great Recession.