A new Gallop poll of small business owners shows optimism about their current business situation at levels not seen in 10 years.
Another poll also reveals a stunning increase in the job creation index from the second to third quarter. The index was +35 in July — an all-time high.
Business owners were asked about their current business situation and how they felt about their businesses’ future. While business owners are historically more positive about the future than their current situation, the results from this poll show a large uptick in how businesses feel about their current situation.
“The overall increase in the index this quarter is mainly the result of an uptick in present situation ratings, rather than expectations about the future,” Gallup states. “The present situation score rose from +36 in the second quarter to +45 in the third quarter.”
Twenty-one percent of small-business owners said they increased the number of jobs, which is one point below the all-time high of 22 percent seen in 2007. Only 10 percent of business-owners said the number of jobs has declined in the past year, which is the lowest level seen since 2006.
Another poll from Gallup finds that job creation hit an all-time high in July. Gallup determines this index by examining whether employers are hiring, expanding their workforce, or laying workers off. Nearly half of employees, 47 percent, said their company was hiring in July while only 10 percent said they were reducing the number of jobs.
“Gallup’s job creation index has been at or near its highest point over the past five months since Gallup began tracking the measure in 2008,” the poll states. “This comes as the U.S. unemployment rate and underemployment in June—the last month for which government data are available—remain low.”
Business owners said their top challenge was government policies such as taxes and regulations.
The climate of deregulation in Washington and the promise of lower taxes apparently have had little effect on these numbers, according to Gallup. They are still the biggest concerns of small business owners and those numbers have not dropped appreciably.
But I think the biggest takeaway from these numbers is that ordinary Americans are ignoring the noise coming from Washington and going on with their daily lives. The Democrats may have hoped to generate fear of Trump among voters, but these polls show no fear, no angst, only an optimism about how their businesses are going now.
The July job numbers showed a humming economy with more than 200,000 jobs created while only 180,000 were expected. If there is a psychological aspect to a growing economy — business confidence and the jobs growth index would seem to indicate that — the near future looks bright indeed.