The CBIZ Small Business Employment Index (SBEI), a barometer for small business hiring trends that surveys approximately 4,000 companies employing 300 or fewer people, reported a 0.32 percent month-over-month decrease in hiring in April, a large decline from the previous reading, which showed a 1.66 percent increase in hiring in March.
This month, 22 percent of companies in the Index increased their employee counts, 52 percent made no change to staff totals and 26 percent cut headcounts. The industry sectors split evenly between growth and decline, with Real Estate, Utilities, Finance and Insurance, Forestry and Fishing, Hunting, Transportation, Healthcare and Educational Services driving the overall results negative. Arts and Entertainment along with Retail Trade and Non-Profits posted positive results this month. Regionally, the North East grew slightly whereas the Central region, the Southeast and the West all declined mildly.
Despite disappointing hiring growth in April, small business owners can hope for clarity on promised policy changes in the second quarter, as corporate tax reform has high potential to impact domestic businesses along with more decisive fiscal policy changes.
The graphic below highlights trends and results from the SBEI.
The SBEI illustration is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.