New York, NY – The majority of adults who own a small business in the
U.S. (defined here as owning a business that employs from 1 to 500 employees) describe
having positive financial expectations when thinking about their business in the year ahead,
with 60% saying that they expect business to improve, according to a recent online study
conducted by Ipsos on behalf of New York Life. On the other hand, another one in five (22%)
expect business to stay the same, while slightly smaller proportions (19%) believe their
business’ financial situation will worsen.
- Younger business owners (63%, under 55), those who are not married (66%), and those
who have been operating their business for less than a year (71%) are among the most likely
to report having an optimistic attitude when asked about their financial expectations for 2017.
Technology is predicted as having the most positive impact on small businesses, with
three quarters (75%) of small business owners believing that this area will have a constructive
effect on their business in the year ahead. The majority are also confident that the new political
landscape (57%), the employment market/ talent pool (56%), interest rates (54%), and health
insurance (53%) will all have a positive impact on their business in 2017. Looking at the
demographic differences that emerge here, it is men, adults under the age of 35, higher
income earners ($50,000 or more), those from the Northeast, those with children living at
home, those with a college degree, those who have owned their business for 10 years or less,
and those who employ at least 51 employees that stand out as being significantly more likely
to see all of these areas as having a positive impact on their business in 2017.
Business Plans for the New Year
When thinking about different business strategies, two thirds of small business owners say
that they plan to both better incorporate mobile technologies in their business (66%) and also
network more with business owners and/ or professionals (64%) in 2017. Just over six in ten
also say that they plan to grow their company by doing things such as opening another
location, increasing revenues, expanding capabilities, etc. (62%), while seeking additional
capital (55%) and hiring more employees (52%) is also top of mind for the majority of small
- Such strategies are much more likely to be top of mind for men, adults between the ages of
18-34, higher income earners, parents, those with a college degree, those who have owned
their business for 1-6 years, and those who have at least 51 employees working for them.
Furthermore, over half of those surveyed plan to seek or utilize assistance from a financial
professional for their business needs (55%) as part of their business plan for 2017. Among
those seeking professional assistance, working with a current partner is more appealing
versus seeking out a new financial professional or partner (56% vs. 44%, respectively).
Other business strategies such as planning to improve their employee benefits package
(49%) or taking out a loan (46%) are not as prevalent, although nearly half nevertheless agree
that they are considering these when thinking about their outlook for 2017.
When it comes to educating themselves to better protect their business, nearly eight in ten
say that they would be interested in learning more about ways to minimize their taxes (79%),
while another seven in ten would be interested in learning to build an emergency fund/
reserve (71%). Interest in learning more about these things is especially pronounced when
looking at younger business owners (ages of 18-34), the more affluent, those with a college
degree, those who have been running their business for less than 10 years, and those who
employ at least 51 employees. As reported by Fit Small Business with the US entering a new governmental direction
changes are to be expected. Understanding these implications suggest being proactive in
protecting your business.
Additional information including findings and methodology is available for download on
the right side of the page.
For more information on this news release please contact:
Ipsos Public Affairs
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