Friday, December 4, 2009

NFIB -- Small Business Gets Coal in Its Stocking

The NFIB has teased Tuesday's release of its monthly SBET, and the picture is not pretty. Their economist, Bill Dunkelberg:

NFIB Jobs Statement: Expect Coal in Small Business Stockings

“The job generating machine is still in reverse as November’s report represents the 22nd consecutive month with more small business owners reporting employment declines than employment increases. Sales are not picking up, so survival requires continuous attention to costs – and labor costs loom large.

“Eight percent (seasonally adjusted) of owners reported unfilled job openings, unchanged since August. Over the next three months, 17 percent plan to reduce employment (up one point), and 7 percent plan to create new jobs (down two points), yielding a seasonally adjusted net negative 3 percent of owners planning to create new jobs, two points worse than October. Still more firms are planning to cut jobs than planning to add.

And, to take a page from my playbook:
“The consumer is the key to job creation, when businesses have more customers, they will hire more workers. Workers must generate enough sales to pay their salaries, or the firm loses money."
More on this when the SBET is released on Tuesday and the data is fully available, but it appears that much of this report will actually be a downtick from last month's. If that is, in fact, the case, it's another very troubling development.