The nation’s nearly 200,000 middle market companies plan to hire 1.4 million new workers over the next 12 months, which is half a million more jobs than projected at the beginning of 2014. According to the National Center for the Middle Market’s (NCMM) latest quarterly Middle Market Indicator (MMI), this resurgence in hiring is being fueled in part by less uncertainty originating in Washington, enabling mid-market executives to shift their focus toward attracting skilled talent, addressing wage pressures, and accessing capital. Based on the latest MMI growth projections, the NCMM estimates middle market firms (with annual revenues between $10 million and $1 billion) will create 59 percent of all new jobs in 2014.
“These findings confirm that mid-sized companies are the unsung heroes of American business,” said Tom Stewart, Executive Director for the NCMM, a collaboration between The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business and GE Capital. “Growing faster than S&P 500 companies and creating more jobs than their small and large business peers, the middle market is a critical factor in stabilizing and growing the U.S. economy.” Mid-sized firms represent only three percent of all American businesses, yet contribute one-third of private GDP and employ one-third of private U.S. workers.
Performance gains accelerating
According to the latest MMI survey of 1,000 middle market executives, strong employment and revenue performance are driving increased confidence and growth projections for the year ahead. Revenue growth over the past 12 months was 6.5 percent, which represents a 1.5 point increase over last quarter’s results and is significantly higher than the S&P 500’s growth rate of just 0.5 percent during the same time period.Mid-market executives also report a 1.2 point gain in employment growth over last quarter, to 3.7 percent. By comparison, small and large companies grew employment at 2.1 percent and 2.6 percent respectively, according to the ADP Jobs Report. Lower middle market firms (with annual revenues between $10 million and $50 million) report particularly notable employment growth, from 2.2 percent last quarter to 3.6 percent this quarter.