Greenhouse Canada

Business optimism hits nine-month high

November 29, 2013  By Canadian Garden Centre & Nursery

Nov. 29, 2013, Toronto — Small business optimism was up in November,
hitting its highest point since February, according to the Canadian
Federation of Independent Business (CFIB).

The CFIB's Business Barometer index rose by nearly a full point to 65.9, up from the 65.0 points reported in October.

"The picture we're looking at right now is reasonably positive," said
Ted Mallett, CFIB's chief economist and vice-president. "It will be
interesting to see if this trend continues among modest pricing and wage
expectations in the coming months."

Entrepreneurs in Newfoundland and Labrador continue to have the
strongest optimism in the country, leading at 74.4 points. Not far
behind are British Columbia (72.3), Alberta (72.1), Saskatchewan (71.4)
and Manitoba (67.6)


Small business optimism in Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia
experienced slight increases in November (54.9 and 60.8 respectively),
while Ontario (65.8) and Quebec (55.5) slipped slightly.

Business owners in professional services, as well as health and
education and natural resources, were the most optimistic in November.

"Expected full-time hiring plans are no different in November, but there
is a slight increase in businesses expecting to cut back staff," added
Mallett. "Although this is not unusual at this time of year, net hiring
does look a little weaker now than the same time in 2012."

The Business Barometer index is measured on a scale from zero to 100. An
index level above 50 means owners expecting their businesses'
performance to be stronger in the next year outnumber those expecting
weaker performance. Past results show that index levels normally range
between 65 and 70 when the economy is growing at its potential.

The finding are based on 1,114 responses to a controlled-access web
survey. Findings are statistically accurate to +/- 2.9 per cent, 19
times in 20.

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