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Small business confidence in Alberta holds steady

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National average dropped below Alberta for first time in 2 ½ years

Alberta small business confidence remains largely unchanged in June at 61.7. Small business confidence in Alberta now sits about one point above the Canadian average for the first time since the decline in global oil prices. The national decline can be localized to a 10 point drop in Ontario.

  • Hiring plans are still negative in May with 20 per cent of small business owners saying they will reduce their full-time workforce and 14 per cent say they intend to hire.
  • Cost constraints stemming from tax and regulatory costs are a concern for 72 per cent of small businesses, followed closely by wage costs at 61 per cent, and fuel, energy costs at 58 per cent.
  • Insufficient domestic demand is the top limitation for 65 per cent of entrepreneurs.
  • Only 21 per cent of small businesses say their overall state of business is good while 24 per cent say it is bad.

Canada's small business optimism dropped by more than five points in June to the 60.9. The other provincial numbers were: British Columbia (69.5), PEI (67.5), Manitoba (67.1), Quebec (65.8), New Brunswick (63.6), Nova Scotia (63.5), Ontario (58.0), Saskatchewan (51.8) and Newfoundland & Labrador (48.2).

Measured on a scale of 0 and 100, an index level above 50 means owners expecting their businesses’ performance to be stronger in the next year outnumber those expecting weaker performance. According to past results, index levels normally range between 65 and 75 when the economy is growing at its potential.

June 2017 findings are based on 726 responses, collected from a stratified random sample of CFIB members, to a controlled-access web survey. Data reflect responses received through June 19. Findings are statistically accurate to +/- 3.6 per cent 19 times in 20.