Chase-Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce Survey Reveals Phoenix Area Small Business Owners’ Positive Outlook on Local and National Economy

Wed Jun 5, 2013 3:00pm EDT

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Chase-Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce Survey Reveals Phoenix Area Small Business Owners’ Positive Outlook on Local and National Economy

Seventy-two percent expect an increase in revenue over the next 12 months; More than 40 percent expect to hire new employees

Phoenix area small business owners believe that the national economy is stable or improving, according to the 2013 Chase-Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce Pulse of the Small Business Survey released today at the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce (GPCC) State of the Chamber Luncheon. Although small business owners across the country have mixed feelings about the state of the national economy, more small business owners in Phoenix (49 percent) believe the national economy is getting better than those nationwide (34 percent).

The survey also revealed that more than seven-in-10 (72 percent) Phoenix area small business owners expect an increase in revenue over the next 12 months. Specifically, 40 percent expect their businesses’ revenue to increase by more than 10 percent. Phoenix area small business owners’ positive economic outlook is fueled by the fact that a majority (56 percent) have reported an increase in revenue over the past 12 months, compared to 44 percent nationwide.

“The economic optimism in Phoenix is encouraging both for local small business owners and the larger community,” said Noreen Bishop, regional manager for business banking at Chase. “By offering the products, services and support that small businesses need most, Chase is proud to play a role in the positive revenue growth of businesses within the community.”

A Strong Phoenix Economy

Reflecting the positive increases in revenue, more than half (54 percent) of Phoenix area small business owners feel that their local economy is stronger than the national economy. Over the past year, Phoenix area small business owners have increased contracts and their customer base (45 percent), expanded products and services offered (35 percent) and hired more employees (30 percent), all signs of a strong local economy.

To propel the growing economy, nearly two-fifths (38 percent) of Phoenix area small business owners reported an increase in the number of jobs at their businesses over the past 12 months, which is 21 percentage points higher than those nationwide (17 percent). Although about half (49 percent) of Phoenix area small business owners have maintained their current staff levels in the last year, more than a third (37 percent) are currently hiring. Phoenix area small business owners expect that trend to continue as 42 percent are looking to increase the number of jobs at their businesses in the next 12 months.

“Phoenix was among the first cities in America to feel the recession, but it was also one of the first to come out, so it’s extremely pleasing to hear and see that many companies are hiring,” said Todd Sanders, president and CEO, GPCC. “They are the lifeblood of our community, the Greater Phoenix Chamber works hard to support local small business owners' growth and help their businesses increase revenue and jobs.”

More than seven-in-10 (71 percent) small business owners in the Phoenix area find it difficult to acquire qualified employees for their businesses, with 28 percent saying that it is very difficult. Work experience (52 percent) proves to be the most valuable attribute of a qualified employee, followed by training (12 percent) and higher education (9 percent).

Local Attributes Driving Small Business

Local environment and quality of life (45 percent), entrepreneurial spirit (41 percent) and networking opportunities (39 percent) are viewed by small business owners as the top three benefits of doing business in the Phoenix area. In addition, two-fifths of Phoenix area small business customers come from their local community.

These benefits seem to be paying off as more than three-fifths (62 percent) of Phoenix area small business owners report that they have been in business for more than 10 years, including 35 percent who have been in business for more than 20 years.

“Phoenix is a thriving community and thanks to small business owners and their entrepreneurial spirit, the city continues to flourish,” said Bishop. “We'll continue to take the temperature of small businesses so we can ensure our products and services are meeting their needs. The success of small businesses is what fuels the growth and maintains the health of the Phoenix economy.”

About the Survey

The 2013 Chase-Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce Pulse of the Small Business Survey is an online poll of 309 small business owners in the Phoenix area conducted April 9-29, 2013. In addition to the Phoenix area survey, an online poll of a randomly-selected sample of 802 small business owners nationwide was conducted April 9-16, 2013. The margin of error for the national survey is ±3.5 percentage points and larger for subgroups.

About Chase

Chase is the U.S. consumer and commercial banking business of JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM), a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2.4 trillion and operations in more than 60 countries. Chase serves more than 52 million consumers and small businesses through more than 5,600 bank branches, 18,700 ATMs, credit cards, mortgage offices, and online and mobile banking as well as through relationships with auto dealerships. More information about Chase is available at www.chase.com.

About the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce

Established in 1888 and representing 2,600 businesses across Metropolitan Phoenix, the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce is Arizona’s largest and most-established business organization. The Chamber supports the growth and development of business by offering networking and marketing opportunities, money-saving programs and a voice in government, keeping its members informed, connected and prosperous. The Chamber enhances members’ success by promoting economic development, entrepreneurship and a connection to the community with local chapters in Anthem, Deer Valley and South Mountain/Laveen.

Chase Card Services
Nicole Kennedy, 302-282-5011
nicole.kennedy@chase.com

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