Pretty intense Gallup poll showing massive collapse in small-business owner attitudes since the election. Note that small business owners tend to be pretty conservative, and were very anti Obama (HT: @dutch_book).
The press release is below.
U.S. Small-Business Owners Pessimistic Post-Election
Decline in optimism disproportionately driven by decline in future expectations
by Dennis Jacobe, Chief EconomistPRINCETON, NJ — U.S. small-business owners are pessimistic post-election, with the Wells Fargo/Gallup Small Business Index plunging to -11 in November from 17 in July. This is the most pessimistic that owners have been about their operating environment since July 2010, when the index stood at -28.
The quarterly survey was conducted Nov. 12-16, 2012, with a random sample of 607 small-business owners, representing the fourth quarter of 2012. Small-business owners grew increasingly optimistic throughout the first two quarters of 2012, with the index reaching a high of 23 in May. Prior to the beginning of the recession in 2008, index scores were generally higher than 100. The Wells Fargo/Gallup Small Business Index was initiated in August 2003.
The decline in small-business owners’ future expectations is disproportionately responsible for the plunge in the overall index. Owners’ expectations for their financial situation, cash flow, capital spending, and hiring over the next 12 months all worsened significantly in November.
- One in five small-business owners (21%) expect the number of jobs at their company to decrease over the next 12 months, the highest percentage Gallup has measured to date.
- One in three owners (34%) expect their company’s capital spending to decrease over the next 12 months — the highest recorded since July 2010.
- 30 per cent of owners expect “poor” cash flow over the next 12 months — the highest Gallup has measured to date.
- 20-eight per cent of owners expect to be in a “poor” financial position 12 months from now — the highest Gallup has measured to date.
Views Toward Present Situation Also Deteriorate
Small-business owners’ ratings of their current operating conditions also declined in November, with the Present Situation Dimension of the index falling nine points to -10. This suggests that small-business owners as a group have gone from being essentially neutral about their current operating environment to being pessimistic. Owners were also pessimistic about their operating environment a year ago, when this dimension stood at -11.
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