Small Business Employment Weakens In April

Date: May 06, 2016

NFIB Monthly Jobs Report Shows Slowed Hiring Across US

According to the latest NFIB monthly jobs report, in April small businesses across the US experienced a weakening environment for job creation. Of the 1,644 US small business owners who responded to the April survey, a bulk of them reported that while they attempted to hire, or did hire, new employees in April, they continued to face difficulties in finding qualified workers. Small companies’ hiring fell by an average loss of 0.08 workers per business. While 12% of small business owners reported that they increased employment by an average of 2.2 workers per company in April, another 13% of employers reported that they decreased employment in April by an average of 3.5 workers per company. Overall, 53% of small businesses reported hiring or attempting to hire workers in April, up 5% from March. However, 87% of those attempting to hire new workers reported that there were few or no applicants qualified for open positions. When asked what their biggest problem currently is, 12% of small business owners cited the lack of skilled workers. The number of owners reporting job openings they were unable to fill in April rose to 29% from 25% in March. However, 11% of small business owners reported they still plan to add new jobs in the near term, up from 9% in March.

Commenting on the results, NFIB Chief Economist Bill Dunkelberg said, “For the first four months of 2016, job creation has been stagnant. Month after month we see no strong direction in our jobs report. This month hiring activities increased, but apparently applicants are not qualified for the open positions.” He pointed out that April marked several months in a row when overall, small business owners have said the lack of skilled workers is their third-biggest problem, behind taxes and government regulations. Dukelberg said, “Small business owners want to hire and that is clear from our data, but they’re scrambling to find applicants to fill open positions.”

What This Means For Small Businesses

Small businesses have seen months of difficulties related to the job market and the economy as a whole. The latest small business jobs report is yet another indication that small business owners are feeling less-than-optimistic about the current state of the job market, a key component of the overall US economy.

Additional Reading

The Wall Street Journal also reports on NFIB’s April small business jobs report.

Note: this article is intended to keep small business owners up on the latest news. It does not necessarily represent the policy stances of NFIB.

Related Content: Small Business News | Economy | Labor | National

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