Small-Business Hiring Picks Up in August: CBIZ
The CBIZ small-business employment index posted modest gains for August after a decline in July.While the overall economy remains stuck with slow growth and a struggling labor market is dominating headlines, the August small-business employment index (SBEI), published by business and payroll services firm CBIZ, showed a small uptick in small-business hiring to 1.15 percent, following a decrease of 1.57 percent in July. The index, a barometer for hiring trends among companies with 300 or fewer employees, found 29 percent of the companies surveyed increased staffing while 20 percent of the companies decreased employee headcounts. Slightly more than half (51 percent) of the companies surveyed maintained their number of employees. The report predicted that more small-business owners might be hesitant to hire new employees in anticipation of a reduction in business demand as the United States heads toward a looming "fiscal cliff," a combination of tax hikes and spending cuts that could negatively impact the struggling economy. The report also said the end of the summer travel season, in combination with the return on students to college campuses, would have a negative impact on the SBEI in September, although the holiday shopping season could drive the index higher.
"Mirroring other employment reports released last Friday, the CBIZ small-business employment index also shows a gain for the month of August. These data sets, taken together, provide some hope that employment is at least on solid ground and increasing moderately," Philip Noftsinger, business unit president for CBIZ Payroll Services, said in a press statement. "In order to have a material impact on the broad number of unemployed Americans, job growth will need to continue to grow at a pace much faster than we have experienced over the past few months."