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BC small business confidence grows in April

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Province’s entrepreneurs are now second most optimistic in Canada

VANCOUVER, April 28, 2016 – According to the latest monthly Business Barometer survey results from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB), BC’s small business optimism increased 2.9 points in April to 65.4. 

Small business confidence among BC’s entrepreneurs increased for a second straight month, while the overall Canadian index rose nearly seven points on the back of significant gains in the majority of provinces. BC’s margin over the national index (59.2) increased to 3.5 points, making it the second highest provincial index in Canada, trailing only PEI (70.8). At the bottom of the list was Alberta, up 3.3 points to 28.6, the first increase in six months.

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

“The gain in small business confidence in BC for April indicates businesses are feeling increasingly optimistic about the economy and the future performance of their business.  The provincial results across the board point to a recuperating national economy,” says Aaron Aerts, CFIB economist in BC.

To view the full report, please visit Business Barometer

Hiring intentions remain relatively buoyant, with 28 per cent of business owners in April saying they plan to increase full-time staff in the next three months, up a point from last month. That compares to 9 per cent expecting to cut back, also up a point from last month.

Forty-eight per cent of entrepreneurs in April believe the general state of health of their business is good, versus 12 per cent who describe it as poor. Both are up one point from March.

The national Business Barometer index increased 6.9 points in April to 59.2. The provincial numbers were: PEI (70.8), BC (65.4), Nova Scotia (64.6), Ontario (62.6), Quebec (62.2), New Brunswick (57.5), Manitoba (54.0), Saskatchewan (48.8), Newfoundland (46.4), and Alberta (28.6).

The April 2016 findings are based on 672 responses, collected from a stratified random sample of CFIB members, to a controlled-access web survey. Data reflect responses received through to April 18. Findings are statistically accurate to +/- 3.8 per cent 19 times in 20.

To arrange an interview with BC Economist, Aaron Aerts, about the BC results, please call 604-684-5325.  To interview Chief Economist, Ted Mallett, about the national results, please call 416-222-8022. For more information about CFIB, visit cfib.ca.

CFIB is Canada’s largest association of small- and medium-sized businesses with 109,000 members across every sector and region, including 10,000 in B.C.