Small business employers in the U.S. added 30,000 jobs in November, according to Intuit, while the hours worked and compensation also rose.
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However, small business revenue fell 0.3 percent in October, continuing a decline that began in February.
Intuit’s Small Business Employment Index indicated that employment rose by 0.14 percent in November, equating to an annualized growth rate of 1.7 percent. Average monthly compensation grew by 0.5 percent, or $14. Average monthly hours worked increased by 0.11 percent, or six minutes. The index is based on data from Intuit Online Payroll and QuickBooks Online Payroll, covering the period from January 2007 through Nov. 23.
"The results are definitely mixed for small businesses," said Susan Woodward, the economist who worked with Intuit to create the indexes. "We began seeing some employment gains in April 2010, but between March and September 2012, the numbers began to drop again. The good news is they are back up for October and November."
Hourly employees at small business worked an average of 110.1 hours in November, up slightly from the revised figure of 110 hours in October, making for a 25.4-hour workweek.
Average monthly pay for small business employees rose to $2,861 in November, up 0.5 percent from the October revised figure of $2,847 per month. This equates to an increase of $14, up from the decrease of $3 seen from September to October. The equivalent annual wages would be about $34,300 per year, which is part-time work for many small business employees.
Intuit’s Employment Index showed growth in all parts of the U.S., except the West North Central, East North Central and New England regions, where the number of jobs declined. The largest employment increases occurred in Maryland and Utah, while Michigan and Kansas experienced the largest decreases.
The October Small Business Revenue Index indicated a 0.3 percent decline from the previous month. The real estate and health care industries saw the biggest drop-offs, at 0.9 and 0.7 percent respectively. Professional services followed with a decline of 0.6 percent. The index is based on data from QuickBooks Online and covers the period from January 2005 through Oct. 31.
"The decline in small business revenue is disheartening, and appears to be happening despite a rise in single-family construction and existing home sales," said Woodward. "There has also been a 4.4 percent increase in the number of people who are self-employed since November 2011. That brings new entrants to compete with incumbents and may explain the steady decrease in revenue per small business.”