Small business owners produce about half the nation’s GDP and employ about half of all working Americans.
The number one issue that business owners are concerned about is rising healthcare costs. This doesn’t come as any surprise, it has been for about the last 25 years, according The National Federation of Independent Business survey. Healthcare legislation passed by the Democrats is in place and will come into full effect in about two years. It has over 20 new taxes! It will take a lot of effort just to wrap your head around all of the regulations let alone complying with them. At the same time, the cost of providing health insurance to employees has continued to rise. Lots to be uncertain about here!
Number two on the hit parade? Uncertainty about the economy. Business owners are wondering whether there will be another recession. Fourth on the survey was uncertainty about government policy. Business owners are wondering if we will become another Greece with the fiscal path we are on. Obviously the election between Obama and Romney play into this uncertainty too. Each candidate demonstrates very different paths, therefore, uncertainty.
Energy costs took third place on the survey. It doesn’t look as though gas and energy prices are going to come down. Gas was $2 four years ago and is almost $4 today. Uncertainty about these costs comes from regulatory decisions about drilling, the EPA and issues in the Middle East. Need I say uncertainty again?
Fifth place was unreasonable government regulations. The amount of time filling out forms, learning the regulations, permits, etc. It is truly astounding at how much time is actually spent complying versus actually doing business, which can improve this ailing economy. Not to mention the cost of all this compliance. Another drain on entrepreneurs.
Feral taxes on business income, ranked sixth, seventh, and eighth. Time required to deal with tax filing takes much of a business owners’ time. Frequent changes and complexity add to the time drain. Not knowing how much tax on these profits significantly reduces reinvestment, therefore no action at all because of uncertainty.
Having owned a business for over 10 years now, I definitely feel uncertain about a lot of things. Heck, I’ve had that feeling every year I’ve been in business. Placing an extra load of uncertainty on running a business feels like the weight of the world on your shoulders. If you have a business, and would like some help, write me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call me at (859) 225-2596.