Small business confidence sags in March

WASHINGTON Tue Apr 9, 2013 7:33am EDT

People wait to meet with job counselors during a job fair at Workforce1 in New York September 6, 2012. Workforce1 is a service provided by the New York City Department of Small Business Services that prepares and connects candidates with job opportunities in city. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

People wait to meet with job counselors during a job fair at Workforce1 in New York September 6, 2012. Workforce1 is a service provided by the New York City Department of Small Business Services that prepares and connects candidates with job opportunities in city.

Credit: Reuters/Brendan McDermid

Related Topics

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Confidence among small businesses fell in March, the latest indication that economic activity lost momentum as the first quarter ended.

The National Federation of Independent Business said on Tuesday its optimism index fell 1.3 points to 89.5 last month. The overall tone of the survey was downbeat, with only two components of the index increasing.

The survey came on the heels of last week's soft employment and manufacturing data. Employers added the fewest jobs in nine months in March, while factory activity expanded at its slowest pace in three months.

The NFIB survey showed the share of owners anticipating better business conditions in the next six months remained in negative territory. The outlook for the labor market, sales and inventories dimmed last month.

Small business owners, however, were optimistic about earnings and credit conditions.

(Reporting by Lucia Mutikani; Editing by Neil Stempleman)

FILED UNDER:
Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.