Research
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Small Businesses Show Growing Signs of Caution About the Future

Employees hard at work
Staffing levels and investment plateau, as concerns about inflation grow.
Read The Q3 2021 Report
Employees hard at work
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Q3 2021 Report Highlights

Small Business Index score gauge
Q3 2021 SBI:56.6
This quarter’s Small Business Index score is 56.6, down from last quarter (60.0 in Q2), but in line with the beginning of the year (55.9 in Q1 2021).
Highlights from the q1 2021 report
50%
of small businesses say it is difficult to recruit and hire enough employees to fill open positions
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34%
of small business owners say the U.S. economy is in good health: higher than any point since the pandemic began.
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72%
of small businesses say they find it difficult to manage higher costs due to inflation as they work to recover from the pandemic.
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50%
of small businesses say it is difficult to recruit and hire enough employees to fill open positions
Learn More
34%
of small business owners say the U.S. economy is in good health: higher than any point since the pandemic began.
Learn More
72%
of small businesses say they find it difficult to manage higher costs due to inflation as they work to recover from the pandemic.
Learn More

The Data Explorer

Use the Data Explorer to browse and analyze years of data from the Small Business Index.

The Data Explorer contains data going back to 2017 (when the Index began) on the 10 big survey questions covering views of the economy, hiring, investment and other key economic indicators.

Explore Past Reports

View More Reports
Woman and man working at a farm shop
Q2 2021 SBI 60.0

Small Business Views of Future Improve

‘Hopeful’ business owners see better economy, expect rising revenue
Carpenter reviewing work on a laptop
Q1 2021 SBI 55.9

Small Businesses’ Health Improves as Economic Concerns Linger

Despite vaccines, majority see long path back to normal
Three people in suits discussing work
Q4 2020 SBI 69.3

Small Business Optimism Remains High Amid Positive Economic Outlook

View of national economy continues to improve, but majority of businesses still need additional Federal help
Woman and man working at a farm shop
Q2 2021 SBI 60.0

Small Business Views of Future Improve

‘Hopeful’ business owners see better economy, expect rising revenue
Carpenter reviewing work on a laptop
Q1 2021 SBI 55.9

Small Businesses’ Health Improves as Economic Concerns Linger

Despite vaccines, majority see long path back to normal
Three people in suits discussing work
Q4 2020 SBI 69.3

Small Business Optimism Remains High Amid Positive Economic Outlook

View of national economy continues to improve, but majority of businesses still need additional Federal help