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BizReport : Research archives : May 01, 2019

Report: SMB outlook mixed

Small businesses are optimistic about their immediate future, but are less-positive that they were last fall. That's the word from Bank of America's 2019 Small Business Owner report. Among the more interesting findings are these: two-thirds (67%) of SMB owners have plans to expand their business and just over half (59%) believe they'll see increased revenue this year.

by Kristina Knight

These positives come despite SMB owners' mixed reaction to 2018's tax reform, rising health care costs, and the upcoming 2020 election cycle. BoA's researchers polled 1,500 SMB owners and entrepreneurs for the findings; in addition to optimism about their specific business, nearly half (48%) say they are optimistic about the overall US economy.

Still, all isn't perfect. Concerns over health care costs and interest rates continue to worry SMB owners; in fact their concern over these matters has increased over the past year. And just over one-third (41%) say their business has been impacted by tariffs - about 20% say their business has been negatively impacted.

"Small business owners remain optimistic about the outlook for their own businesses and project revenue increases in the year ahead," said Sharon Miller, head of Small Business, Bank of America. "However, these entrepreneurs are also feeling slightly less confident in the economy and are expressing more concern about a variety of economic factors."

The report also found:

▪ 33% of SMB owners note concerns about climate change, 66% say they're concerned about the 'current political climate' in America
▪ 69% say they've "taken steps" to plan for an economic downturn
▪ 80% say they're upping data security

"Overall, we found that most business owners are preparing for whatever the future may hold, creating continuity plans for their business in the case of a disaster and taking steps to prepare for a potential economic downturn," writes Miller.

The full Spring 2019 Small Business Owner Report can be accessed here.

Tags: Bank of America, small business, Small Business Owner Report, SMB tips, SMB trends

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