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Confidence on rise as small biz week set to kick off

Experts say the government should offer more resources.

Experts say the government should offer more resources. (Anthony Lanzilote) Photo Credit: Experts say the government should offer more resources. (Anthony Lanzilote)

Just in time for the launch of National Small Business Week on Monday, numbers yesterday showed that small business optimism rose to a one-year high in May, a hopeful sign for the U.S. economy.

The National Federation of Independent Business reported that its Small Business Optimism Index increased 2.3 points to 94.4 last month, the highest level since May last year.

The NFIB predicted that confidence will continue to rise as the economy adjusts to higher taxes and government spending cuts.

However, "Expectations about the future course of the economy clearly improved over the past few months, but not to levels seen in a 'recovery' or even in periods of solid growth," the NFIB said.

Sabina Ptacin, co-founder of Tin Shingle, a national small business community and resource organization based in Greenpoint, agreed that while the numbers are a positive step, they could be better.

Government incentives such as tax credits, grants and support programs would go a long way to encourage more people to become entrepreneurs, she explained.

"You want these numbers we see to show that entrepreneurs are expanding, they're creating new jobs," Ptacin said, adding that "we hope that the government sees that and says, 'these aren't high optimism numbers and we need to do more.'"

In addition, "In many cases it's consumers that can be the ones helping small businesses by supporting them," she said.

According to the National Small Business Association, small businesses, defined by companies with less than 500 employees, make up 99.7% of employer firms in the U.S. and are responsible for 64% f net new private-sector jobs.

They make up 99% of all New York businesses, according to the state's Small Business Development Center.

To celebrate National Small Business week, will offer free webinars, podcasts and articles to educate New Yorkers about starting and growing their businesses.

(with Reuters)


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