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Midsize Business Executives Show More Optimism Than Small Business Owners

Recent survey results reveal that while small business owners are growing more confident in the U.S. economy, they are still unsure of their own businesses.

According to the report, 35% of survey participants believe the economy is currently better than it was last year. When the same question was asked in July of 2012, only 21% of the respondents gave positive answers. However, only 64% claimed confidence in their business’s future, up only 4% from last year.

Interestingly, outlook is different amongst executives at midsize companies. Bloomberg BusinessWeek explains that “they’re more optimistic about their local economies than they are in their national or global outlooks, according to a quarterly survey published last month by the National Center for the Middle Market.”

GE Capital Americas CEO Dan Henson explained: “If you ask them their view on the global economy, they’re very negative. You pull back to the U.S. and they’re still fairly down. You ask them about their industry and they feel a little better. Then you ask them about their own company and they’re confident in their ability to maneuver.”

“A likely cause for this discrepancy is the fact that media reports signaling massive economic failures, such as the debt ceiling and sequestration, have been fewer in recent months, and despite Congress’ continuing inability to get much done- the focus of their failures has not necessarily been economic in nature,” NSBA Chairman David Ickert and CEO Todd McCracken wrote in a letter. “Despite the lower prevalence of negative economic news, the fact remains that times are still very difficult for small businesses and there is growing hesitation by small businesses, even those who have a better economic outlook than six months ago, to take on the risk of growth or hiring.”

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