As 2018 wraps up, small businesses across the nation are thriving, with record high optimism that’s been on the rise since December 2016—the longest streak of small business optimism in the survey’s 45-year history.
Earlier this month, Larry Kudlow, the White House National Economic Council Director, spoke at a “The State of Small Business” event. During the event, Kudlow discussed the opportunities and challenges currently facing small business owners in the United States—from economic climate shifts to key administration issues policies like minimum wage, employee healthcare, tariffs, and deregulatory efforts.
Kudlow opened his remarks by citing NFIB’s Small Business Optimism Index, which reached a survey record-high of 108.8 in August and accomplished a 23-month positive trend.
“For small business, I’m a great devotee of … the National Federation of Independent Business,” Kudlow said. “[They] do fabulous work.”
Among the record-high measures produced by small business owners this last year were job openings, plans to hire, job creation, profit growth, and compensation increases—both actual and planned.
“I believe the biggest story in 2018 is an economic boom that almost everyone said would be impossible,” Kudlow said during the event. “The economy, to me, looks so strong and durable right now—confidence is up, jobs are up, blue collar is up, small businesses are up.”
To maintain that momentum, NFIB is urging lawmakers to make key provisions of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act permanent, including the 20 percent small business deduction for pass-through entities.
According to a recent NFIB member ballot, more than 90 percent of small business owners support permanently extending the expiring provisions of the act. Absent action from lawmakers, tax cuts for the vast majority of small businesses expire after Dec. 31, 2025, complicating long-term planning for small business owners.