- Small business owners are more positive about their ability to obtain credit in the year ahead. The percent of businesses expecting credit to be difficult to obtain the next 12 months (26 percent) is at its lowest level since the third quarter of 2008.
- Capital spending is slightly more positive. For the second consecutive quarter, more business owners expect to increase the amount of money allocated for capital spending (28 percent) than decrease (23 percent) over the next 12 months.
As optimism gradually improves, business owners are feeling more satisfied with their work. When asked how satisfied they are being a small business owner, a firm majority (56 percent) say that they are either extremely or very satisfied, up from 51 percent in the third-quarter 2013.
Entrepreneurs start their own businesses for a variety of reasons. In the second-quarter Index, a majority of respondents said securing their financial future (69 percent), being their own boss (66 percent) and setting their own hours (51 percent) were among the reasons they became business owners.
Wells Fargo, together with Gallup, surveys small business owners quarterly across the nation to gauge their perceptions of their present situation (past 12 months) and future expectations (next 12 months) in six key areas: financial situation, cash flow, revenues, capital spending allocation, hiring, and credit availability.
|Overall Index Score||Present Situation||Future Expectations|
|Q2 2014 (surveyed April 2014)||+47||+14||+33|
|Q1 2014 (surveyed January 2014)||+45||+16||+29|
|Q4 2013 (surveyed October 2013)||+24||+7||+17|
|Q3 2013 (surveyed July 2013)||+25||+4||+21|
|Q2 2013 (surveyed April 2013)||+16||+2||+14|
Since August 2003, the Wells Fargo/Gallup Small Business Index has surveyed small business owners on current and future perceptions of their business financial situation. The Index consists of two dimensions: 1) Owners’ ratings of the current situation of their businesses and, 2) Owners’ ratings of how they expect their businesses to perform over the next 12 months. Results are based on telephone interviews with 600 small business owners in all 50 United States conducted March 31-April 4, 2014. The overall Small Business Index is computed using a formula that scores and sums the answers to 12 questions — six about the present situation and six about the future. An Index score of zero indicates that small business owners, as a group, are neutral — neither optimistic nor pessimistic — about their companies’ situations. The overall Index can range from -400 (the most negative score possible) to +400 (the most positive score possible), but in practice spans a much more limited range. The margin of sampling error is +/- four percentage points. The highest Index reading was positive 114 (+114) in fourth quarter of 2006, and the lowest reading was negative 28 (-28) in third quarter of 2010.
Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a nationwide, diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.5 trillion in assets. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, insurance, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through more than 9,000 locations, 12,500 ATMs, and the internet (wellsfargo.com), and has offices in 36 countries to support customers who conduct business in the global economy. With more than 265,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 25 on Fortune’s 2013 rankings of America’s largest corporations.Wells Fargo’s vision is to satisfy all our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially. Wells Fargo perspectives and stories are also available at blogs.wellsfargo.com and at wellsfargo.com/stories.
For more than 70 years, Gallup has been a recognized leader in the measurement and analysis of people’s attitudes, opinions and behavior. While best known for the Gallup Poll, founded in 1935, Gallup’s current activities consist largely of providing marketing and management research, advisory services and education to the world’s largest corporations and institutions.