Small Business Confidence Takes a Nosedive

More evidence of the growing disconnect between consumer confidence (still at or near a recovery high) and small business confidence (recently tumbling from a recovery high) comes from the latest Gallup survey of business owners who have taken a rather a dim view of things since the summer.

Since this poll is conducted quarterly, it’s hard to know exactly when small business owners began to sour on their situation, but the election, the fiscal cliff, and looming health care changes were surely factors.

Gallup Business Confidence

This is kind of an odd index as a “normal” reading (i.e., before the financial crisis) is about 100 and now it’s just plunged back below zero. In fact, the recent 28 point drop appears to be the second worst decline in almost 10 years, exceeded only by the late-2008 financial crisis free-fall.

Considering how high consumer confidence remains, this is really a pretty remarkable disconnect between how consumers see things and how small business owners see things.

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