Goldman Sachs Survey Reveals Hurdles for Small Businesses

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NEW YORK  – A new national survey of small business owners from Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Voices shows that small businesses across America are open for business but hitting roadblocks at every turn. While small business owners express optimism about the future, they face difficulties hiring employees and maintaining payroll as operating costs increase. Long-term access to capital and inflation are also pressing concerns for small businesses.

The new survey found that of the 71% of small businesses currently hiring, 81% are finding it difficult to recruit qualified candidates, citing a limited labor supply, generous unemployment benefits, and high labor costs. At the same time, 83% of small business owners report an increase in operating costs over the past few months and 82% are concerned about the impact of inflation on their businesses. As a result, almost half of small businesses (48%) have had to increase their prices.

Other key insights from the June survey include:

  • While many small business owners (44%) are still struggling financially due to the impact of COVID-19, the majority of those surveyed (67%) now believe that the United States is moving in the right direction.
  • Small business owners generally support President Biden’s infrastructure proposal, with 61% in support of the American Jobs Plan and 60 percent in support of the American Families Plan. However, fewer than 50% believe it will help their businesses.
  • 82% of small business owners who received a second PPP loan expect to exhaust their funds by the end of July and only 24% are very confident they will be able to maintain payroll if no further government relief is provided. Almost all small business owners (93%) support Congress re-evaluating the SBA loan terms so that hard-hit small businesses can access capital.
  • Finally, small business owners overwhelmingly support (88%) increasing opportunities for small businesses through the federal procurement process. Almost all respondents (93%) call on state and local governments to prioritize contracts for small businesses.

“Small businesses are the engine of the economy and need continued support from our policymakers to make a full recovery,” said Jill Bommarito, founder and CEO of Ethel’s Baking Company and member of the 10,000 Small Businesses Voices National Leadership Council. “Today’s survey shows that Washington must act now to address hurdles on the road to recovery, including rising operating costs, access to capital, and labor shortages.”  

For the full survey, please visit gs.com/small-businesses-hit-roadblocks-on-road-to-recovery.

 The survey of 857 Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses participants was conducted by Babson College and David Binder Research from June 1-2. The survey included small business owners from 46 U.S. states and two U.S. territories, 53% of whom were women.

 

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