Latest Polls Show Michigan Small Business Owners Optimistic About the Economy


Michigan small business owners and executives are optimistic about the future of the local economy, according to the latest survey results from the Michigan Future Business Index.

The information gathered in June shows that two-thirds of small business leaders are satisfied with the current economy of the state, and that over one-third expect their future profits to increase by an average of 60%. The expected growth was even higher in some regional areas, particularly western (66%) and northern lower (68%) Michigan.

"The latest survey shows that Michigan small business owners remain bullish about the future," said Chris Holman, CEO of the Michigan Business Network, which created the study. "We continue to see great optimism for future growth into 2016 and beyond."

Despite an increasingly digitized economy, research shows that 94% of all retail sales still occur in brick-and-mortar stores, though the boon in the local economy since the lows of the Great Recession have spread across all sectors of industry.

"Small businesses remain largely positive about their prospects for doing business in Michigan," Mike Britt, president of Accident Fund Insurance Company of America, said in a statement. "Although projections of growth have slowed since December 2015, overall sales and profits remain strong with little sign of decline."

Moreover, employers' attitudes toward the available workforce in Michigan have also improved. Some 51% of business owners think that Michigan's labor pool is good or excellent, up five points since the previous polling in December.

Increased opportunities for job training or skills building, through programs such as Pure Michigan Talent Connect and Michigan Works!, have also improved employers' ability to find skilled workers. The survey showed that 45% of owners reported difficulty in finding qualified workers, down from 49% in December.

"It's getting a little better," Holman told the Detroit Free Press. "We're in clear water now and will start sailing faster now."

For full story, pick up a copy of the MONTH XX issue of The Allegan County News/The Union Enterprise/The Commercial Record or subscribe to the e-edition.

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