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Optimism among small and mid-size U.S. business owners still strong

Christian Fernsby |
According to the latest PNC semi-annual survey of small and mid-size business owners and executives they are optimistic.

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Optimism among business leaders about their own company is particularly strong at 55% compared to one year ago (51%) and near the spring 2018 record high for this 16-year survey (58%).

Thirty-nine percent of respondents describe their outlook for the national economy as highly optimistic. Those pessimistic about the national economy hit a survey record low of 7%. Those expecting an increase in the need for financing (8%), employee health care costs (35%), and personal compensation and retirement (22% and 25%, respectively) all declined from a year ago.

"U.S. economic fundamentals remain solid, despite slower economic growth and the ongoing trade war between the United States and China," said Gus Faucher, chief economist of The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.

Nearly two-thirds (63%) of small and mid-size business leaders expect their company's sales to increase, little changed from fall 2018 (64%), but below the near record high of 69% (spring 2018). However, 52% expect their profits to increase, down from fall 2018 (59%).

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