The CBIZ Small Business Employment Index showed a slight decrease for the month of July.

The SBEI measured the hiring trends of companies that has 300 employees or less, and found that the numbers decreased 1.57 percent in July, following an increase of 1.38 percent in June. 

Of the companies surveyed, the statistics show that 29 percent reported a decrease in employee headcount, while 22 percent increased staffing. Forty-nine percent of the companies that took part in the survey maintained their number of employees. 

“This year’s data moved more negative than in the previous two years, possibly indicating that small business employers are not only feeling the economic slowdown that has been widely acknowledged, but may also be anticipating the slowdown continuing or increasing as we approach the fall and into the holiday shopping season,” said CBIZ Payroll Services business unit president Philip Noftsinger in a statement.  

In contrast, ADP’s job survey disclosed that the private sector added 163,000 jobs in July, which exceeded analysts’ expectations (see ADP Finds Private Sector Added 163,000 Jobs in July). ADP revised the June figures and found that 172,000 jobs were added. ADP found that 73,000 jobs were created in small businesses, with the goods-producing sector adding 4,000 jobs, and the service-providing sector adding 69,000 jobs.

CBIZ noted that if the jobless rate remains at 8.2 percent, the small business sector could undergo more losses going forward. Added to the increasing costs of running a business, the sector is bound to face more uncertainty. Small business owners are also confronting the prospect of declines in global economic growth. CBIZ suggests that business owners should frequently evaluate their fiscal controls, process evaluations and metrics management.  

“Owners of businesses with less than 300 total employees are still focused on, and concerned with, anticipated sales, taxes and regulation,” said Noftsinger. “It is possible that if the entrepreneurs we work with were able to better predict the changes to the latter two items, via action by Congress, they may be willing to invest in additional labor. Predictability is extremely important for the small business owner, who after three years of slow economic activity, is operating with few resources.”

For more on the SBEI report, visit the CBIZ Blog 

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