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Manitoba small biz optimism holds steady in June

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Winnipeg, June 30, 2016 – Today, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) released its latest Business Barometer® index, which shows small business optimism in Manitoba remained basically unchanged in June at an index of 57.8 compared to 57.7 in May. This index level is below Manitoba’s five year average of 63.5 and below the national index of 60.0.

“While Manitoba’s small business optimism held steady in June, short-term hiring plans weakened somewhat with 17 per cent of small business owners expecting to add staff versus 13 per cent anticipating reductions,” noted Marilyn Braun-Pollon, CFIB Vice-President Prairie and Agri-Business. “Similarly to last month’s numbers, only one-third of Manitoba owners say their businesses are in good shape – a low proportion in comparison to other provinces.”

Canada’s small businesses grew a little more confident in June. CFIB's Business Barometer® Index rose almost two points to hit 60.0. This level is still low by historical standards, but it is the highest reading in just over a year.

Overall, business owners posted improvements in 7 of 10 provinces. Leading the pack with an index score of 69.3 are those in British Columbia, followed closely by the 68.0 from Prince Edward Island businesses. Provinces at the other end of spectrum—Alberta (42.5), Newfoundland and Labrador (45.8) and Saskatchewan (54.8)—all registered much-welcome improvements this month. Optimism leapt in New Brunswick (64.9) and there were modest improvements in Quebec (61.6). Declines in sentiment in Ontario and Nova Scotia (both at 61.5) helped restrain the national average. Results and the full report are available here.

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 70 when the economy is growing at its potential.

June 2016 findings are based on 743 responses, collected from a stratified random sample of CFIB members, to a controlled-access web survey. Data reflect responses received through June 20. Findings are statistically accurate to +/- 3.6 per cent 19 times in 20.

To arrange an interview with Marilyn Braun-Pollon, Vice-President Prairie and Agri-business on the provincial results, please call 1 888-234-2232, 204-982-0817 or email [email protected]. You can also follow CFIB Manitoba on Twitter @cfibMB.

To arrange an interview with Ted Mallett, Vice-President & Chief Economist on the national results please call (416) 222-8022 or email [email protected]. You may also follow Ted on Twitter @cfibeconomics.

Business Barometer® is a monthly publication of the CFIB and is a registered trademark.