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Small Businesses Added No New Jobs To The Economy In August

Written by Tim Morral
Published: 9/17/2012

NFIB report says that the small business sector experienced "essentially zero" job growth during the month of August.

On the heels of last week's Labor Department report showing that the U.S added an anemic 96,000 jobs last month for an unemployment rate of 8.1 percent, the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) is reporting that small businesses added "essentially zero" new jobs in August.

Small Business Hiring - NFIB Perspective

The findings are part of the NFIB's monthly economic survey and reflect a sampling of more than 700 small businesses. According to survey results, August's seasonally adjusted net change in employment per firm was -.05, a small decrease from survey results for July.

"Any serious job creation this year will have to come from large firms or new small firms created to meet the needs of millions of new consumers due to population growth," said William C. Dunkelberg, chief economist for NFIB. "But existing small businesses are unlikely to expand before the election."

On the margins, 12 percent of small business owners said they added an average of 2.7 workers per firm over the past three months, while 10 percent of owners reduced their workforce by 2.5 employees. The other 78 percent of small business employers made no net changes in the level of their workforces.

When it comes to recruiting and hiring, small businesses can't afford to make any mistakes in today's economy. Since businesses need to make every new hire count, it's important for leaders and entrepreneurs to perform a thorough candidate review and hiring process for every open position.

"A glimmer of hope, perhaps; the percent of owners reporting hard to fill job openings rose 3 points to 18 percent of all owners," added Dunkelberg. "Job openings are highly correlated with the unemployment rate, so the August survey offers some hope of an improvement. But we won't hold our breaths."

For the full report, visit the NFIB website.

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