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Sales Growth Slows at Private Companies: What Does That Mean For Jobs?

The company analyzes 1,000 financial statements per day in approximately 1,200 industry codes.

Land subdivision was the only industry to see sales actually decline over the past dozen months, while nonmetallic mineral mining and quarrying had essentially flat growth, Sageworks says. Other slow-growing industries included business support services and places serving alcohol, the data say.

Industries that had growth rates above 25% year over year included: petroleum and petroleum products merchant wholesalers; industrial machinery manufacturing; and metal and mineral merchant wholesalers, the data found.

"There is real anxiety among companies about their businesses in the future," Hamilton says.

In this case blaming Washington might be warranted, he says.

"I'm a little worried that the environment being so poisonous in Washington right now, it really is, that they are throwing policies at these people -- 27 million people -- that at the last minute expect them to adapt and make decisions on a dime," Hamilton says. "Where's the anxiety coming from? It's not in the fundamental performance. It's outside of that. And then you look to D.C."

"Again if you're going to give a policy, these people are very adaptable, they really are ... they need to know what policies are coming down the pike so they can plan," Hamilton says.

Hamilton wouldn't comment on which presidential candidate would be better for private business.

"Most businesses probably lean conservative," Hamilton says. "I don't know whether [Republican candidate Mitt] Romney can pull off lower taxes but ... lowering costs would be a great thing."

-- Written by Laurie Kulikowski in New York.

To contact Laurie Kulikowski, send an email to: Laurie.Kulikowski@thestreet.com.

>To submit a news tip, email: tips@thestreet.com.

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