PROTECTING SMALL BUSINESS, PROMOTING ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Business Trends

March 12th, 2020 by

Low inflation is a foundational matter that will help weather whatever economic storms lie ahead by Raymond J. Keating- The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the Consumer Price Index (CPI) increased by 0.1 percent in February, and over the past 12 months, inflation ran at 2.3 percent. For the past seven months, in particular, […]

March 5th, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the U.S. labor force has been on the rise over the past two years. However, that doesn’t mean that this positive development has held across the entire country. For example, the BLS “Regional and State Unemployment – 2019 Annual Averages” […]

March 5th, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The latest edition of the Fed’s Beige Book points to an economy expanding at “a modest to moderate rate” in a majority of Federal Reserve districts. However, the St. Louis and Kansas City Districts reported no growth. As for the horizon, worries focus on the coronavirus and the presidential election. As […]

February 26th, 2020 by

  by Raymond J. Keating- Small Business Policy Index 2019: California ranked 49th – second worst – among the 50 states. SBE Council’s “Small Business Policy Index 2019” ranks the 50 states according to 62 different policy measures, including a wide array of tax, regulatory and government spending and performance measurements. Small Business Tax Index […]

February 21st, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The Conference Board released its latest Leading Economic Index report on February 20, and the bottom-line takeaway was: “The LEI’s six-month growth rate has returned to positive territory, suggesting that the current economic expansion – at about 2 percent – will continue through early 2020.” Among the positives in January were […]

February 20th, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The residential housing market stayed on a positive roll into the first month of 2020, and that’s good news for the small businesses that overwhelmingly dominate housing construction – with 97.4 percent of employer firms in the residential building construction industry having fewer than 20 employees – and for the economy […]

February 14th, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The economic growth experienced over the past year largely has rested on the shoulders of the consumer, given the stall or decline in private investment and in trade. That’s a dicey scenario, considering that consumers take their cues from how much business is investing and hiring. Hiring, of course, has remained […]

February 6th, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that nonfarm business labor productivity grew by 1.4 percent in the fourth quarter of 2019, and by 1.7 percent for all of 2019. As noted by the BLS, “Labor productivity, or output per hour, is calculated by dividing an index of real output by […]

February 6th, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The monthly takes on the economy offered by the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) point to continued modest growth in the economy – estimated at roughly 2.4 percent – during the first month of 2020. The ISM report on manufacturing for January came in at 50.9 percent. That was up from […]

February 5th, 2020 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The latest trade report from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis provided another reminder that the U.S. suffers whenever government chooses to raise costs and obstacles to free trade. While U.S. exports of goods and services inched up during the last two months of 2019, the December level was still down […]

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