SurePayroll Inc., a leader in providing online payroll to small businesses nationwide, today announced results for the January 2013 SurePayroll Small Business Scorecard® showing month-over-month hiring was down 0.1 percent and the average paycheck was up 0.6 percent. The average paycheck has increased for three consecutive months. Small-business owners' optimism sits at 57 percent, only two points higher than last month. “It’s the Yogi Berra economy in 2013, déjà vu all over again,” said SurePayroll CEO and President Michael Alter. “Small-business owners appear to be approaching 2013 much the same way they’ve approached the last few years. There’s slow growth in revenue, but not enough to account for new employees. While the average paycheck has gone up, so did the payroll tax, and it means existing employees are probably working longer hours. We haven’t seen unemployment go down significantly for small businesses.” Small-business owners were also surveyed about their response to the 2.0 percent payroll tax increase. Results showed 87 percent of small-business owners have not been asked for raises to make up for the increase and 80 percent do not plan to budget for such raises. Small business owners mentioned bonus programs based on performance, price increases and paying less on debt as ways to mitigate the impact of the payroll tax increase. Month-over-month SurePayroll Scorecard data showed hiring was down 0.1 percent and the average paycheck was up 0.6 percent. Hiring was down month over month in every region of the country except for the South, where it was up 0.2 percent. Paychecks were up month over month across the country, including 0.7 percent in the Midwest; 1.0 percent in the Northeast; 0.4 percent in the South; and 0.4 percent in the West. Year over year, nationwide hiring is down only 1.2 percent and paychecks are down 0.3 percent. Year over year, the South is the only region where hiring is up 1.9 percent and paychecks there are down 0.5 percent. The West shows a hiring decline of 4.6 percent, with paychecks flat. Hiring in the Midwest is down 1.8 percent and paychecks are positive, up 2.8 percent. In the Northeast, hiring is down 2.1 percent and paychecks are down 3.2 percent.
As the first economic indicator created by a payroll company, the SurePayroll Scorecard has provided a monthly look at national hiring and paycheck trends since September 2004. SurePayroll's Scorecard compiles data from more than 40,000 small businesses, and exclusively reflects the trends affecting the nation's "micro businesses" — those with an average of eight employees.The full SurePayroll Small Business Scorecard infographic includes data for the top 35 MSAs. The January 2013 Scorecard is available now on the SurePayroll blog. About SurePayroll SurePayroll is a wholly owned subsidiary of Paychex, providing an easy, online, convenient payroll service that keeps our more than 40,000 small business customers in control. SurePayroll also offers efficient online solutions for managing 401(k) plans, health insurance, workers’ compensation, employee screening and more. For accountants and banking partners, SurePayroll provides private-label and co-branded services that enable them to offer online payroll processing to their small business clients. The company has received numerous prestigious awards for its innovative technology, and outstanding customer service and sales teams, including recognition from PC Magazine, Accounting Today, the American Business Awards and many others. For more information, please visit www.Surepayroll.com. About Paychex Paychex, Inc. (NASDAQ:PAYX) is a leading provider of payroll, human resource, and benefits outsourcing solutions for small- to medium-sized businesses. The company offers comprehensive payroll services, including payroll processing, payroll tax administration, and employee pay services, including direct deposit, check signing, and Readychex®. Human resource services include 401(k) plan recordkeeping, section 125 plans, a professional employer organization, time and attendance solutions, and other administrative services for business. A variety of business insurance products, including group health and workers' compensation, are made available through Paychex Insurance Agency, Inc. Paychex was founded in 1971. With headquarters in Rochester, New York, the company has more than 100 offices serving approximately 567,000 payroll clients as of May 31, 2012. For more information about Paychex and our products, visit www.paychex.com.