The latest index score rose 16 points from the previous quarter, to 12. This was the second consecutive increase for the index, which calculates the present and expectations from business owners on six measures: financial, cash flow, revenue, capital allocation spending, job hiring and access to credit.
Businesses are most optimistic about increased revenue over the coming months, according to Wells Fargo (WFC).
On jobs specifically, 23% of participants said they expect their headcount to increase, up from 18% in the fourth quarter. The number of employers who cut jobs also decreased, to 25% from 30%. The survey is based on telephone interviews with 603 small-business owners.
"Small businesses are feeling much better about this economic recovery than they did two quarters ago," says Dr. Scott Anderson, senior economist at Wells Fargo. "It appears the change is driven by healthy gains in demand from consumers and businesses, which are leading to improvements in small businesses' revenue and cash flows."
Select the service that is right for you!COMPARE ALL SERVICES
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
- Weekly roundups
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Upgrade/downgrade alerts
- Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
- Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
- Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
- Real Money + Doug Kass + 15 more Wall Street Pros
- Intraday commentary & news
- Ultra-actionable trading ideas
- 100+ monthly options trading ideas
- Actionable options commentary & news
- Real-time trading community
- Options TV