The Tax and Jobs Act's Impact Evident on Main Street

Date: September 18, 2018

In December 2017, Congress passed what is now a historic tax reform package. The new tax law sparked an economic revitalization resulting in higher wages, record small business optimism, and an increase in job opportunities.

On Sept. 06, the Joint Economic Committee held a hearing on the positive effects of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. NFIB’s Chief Economist Dr. William C. Dunkelberg testified at the hearing, representing small businesses across the country and voicing the economic impact of Main Street.

“For 45 years, NFIB has surveyed a sample of its hundreds of thousands of member firms and, based on their responses, produced the now well-known Index of Small Business Optimism,” Dr. Dunkelberg said during his testimony. “The 45-year average of the Index is 98 … After the 2016 election results were known, the Index averaged 102 for the balance of November, then rose to 105.8 in December and has averaged over 105 since then, culminating in the 107.9 reading in July. “Main Street” is on fire, making a significant contribution to the growth in output and new jobs in the economy.”

According to NFIB’s 2016 Small Business Problems and Priorities survey, five of the top 10 problems small business owners faced were tax related. In fact, 29 percent reported federal taxes as a critical problem in operating their business.

But thanks to NFIB’s lobbying efforts on tax reform, small business owners will finally experience considerable tax relief, freeing up resources that they can use to expand and grow their business. NFIB’s monthly Small Business Economic Trends survey now finds that the top concern for 25 percent of small business owners is “finding qualified labor” compared to 15 percent citing taxes—a reflection of the record-breaking levels of job creation and job creation plans.

“Today’s groundbreaking numbers are demonstrative of what I’m hearing every day from small business owners – that business is booming,” said NFIB President and CEO Juanita Duggan in a statement on the Optimism Index’s results. “As the tax and regulatory landscape changed, so did small business expectations and plans. We’re now seeing the tangible results of those plans as small businesses report historically high, some record-breaking, levels of increased sales, investment, earnings, and hiring.”

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