Jobs Report

NFIB Small Business Jobs Report

The NFIB Research Foundation has collected Small Business Economic Trends data with quarterly surveys since 1974 and monthly surveys since 1986. Survey respondents are drawn from NFIB’s membership. The survey was conducted in March 2018 and reflects a random sample of 10,000 small-business owners/members.

Small Business Job Creation Plans Stays at Historic High Levels in March

Small business owners raise wages as tight labor market continues, according to the NFIB Jobs Report

NFIB’s chief economist William C. Dunkelberg, issued the following comments on NFIB’s March 2018 Jobs Report:

Bill "Dunk" Dunkelberg
NFIB Chief Economist
William Dunkelberg

Washington, D.C. (Apr. 5, 2018) – The monthly Jobs Report, released today, shows small business owners reported historically high job creation plans, rising two points to a net 20 percent. At the same time, the number of small business owners raising compensation reached its highest reading since November 2000 at a net 33 percent in response to the tight labor market.

“Small businesses are telling us that they’re optimistic, hiring, and willing to raise wages to find the right employees for their businesses,” said NFIB President and CEO Juanita Duggan.

Small business owners reported a seasonally-adjusted average employment change per firm of 0.36 workers, one of the best readings in survey history. A seasonal-adjusted 14 percent of owners said they are increasing employment by an average of 2.8 workers per firm.

“It’s a positive sign that we’re seeing small business owners creating new jobs at historic levels,” said NFIB Chief Economist Bill Dunkelberg. “Aside from the past four months, you’d have to go back to 1999 to see 20 percent or above on job creation plans.”

Businesses hiring or trying to hire rose one point to 53 percent, but 47 percent reported few or no qualified workers. In addition, 21 percent of owners cited difficulty finding qualified workers as their Single Most Important Business Problem, down one point from February. Thirty-five percent of all owners reported job openings they could not fill in the current period, up one point, tying July and October 2017 for the highest reading since November 2000.

Professional service firms were most affected with 35 percent of owners saying labor quality is their top problem. Thirty percent plan to increase total employment, up three points, and two percent plan reductions, down one point. Hiring plans were the strongest in construction, manufacturing, and wholesale trades.

In February, the jobs report saw a significant jump of owners who reported using temporary workers. That number went down five points to ten percent, which indicates that many of these workers got permanent positions.

The full Small Business Economic Trends report will be released on Tuesday, April 10th





March 2018 Jobs Report from NFIB

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