The report notes the downturn in the economy during the second half of 2007 when the NFIB Small Business Optimism Index dropped to 94.6 in December, the lowest since 2001.
Health care costs rank first in small business problems regardless of
the legal form of business (including proprietorships, partnerships,
C-Corps, S-Corps, or LLCs).
This NFIB’s survey of small business reveals the major concerns of small business owners. Small Business Problems & Priorities was
released this week,following up similar surveys from 1982, 1986, 1991,
1996, 2000 and 2004. Having these historical data for comparison is
useful and instructive.
Click on the chart on the right to see how the top 8 problems of
small business rank since 1982. The takeaway is easy to see: health
care costs have been the top small business problem since 1982, when
this survey was first conducted.
Jane’s Hot Points: Small business has felt over a
quarter-century of hurt when it comes to health care costs, and this is
shown to be true for the smallest-small companies (with 1-4 employees)
to larger (with over 100 employees). Health costs are also the top
problem for small business across industries, from agriculture and
retail to wholesale and construction. The NFIB survey doesn’t call for
specific remedies. But it does call out for change, and soon. A silver
anniversary on health cost-problems is nothing to celebrate.