cash register, not fullSmall business confidence, as measured by the Research Foundation of the National Federation of Independent Business, imploded in November. If small businesses account for most hiring in the United States, then the American economy is in for a jolt.

NFIB chief economist Bill Dunkelberg wrote:

Something bad happened in November - and based on the NFIB survey data, it wasn't merely Hurricane Sandy. The storm had a significant impact on the economy, no doubt, but it is very clear that a stunning number of owners who expect worse business conditions in six months had far more to do with the decline in small-business confidence. Nearly half of owners are now certain that things will be worse next year than they are now. Washington does not have the needs of small business in mind. Between the looming "fiscal cliff," the promise of higher healthcare costs and the endless onslaught of new regulations, owners have found themselves in a state of pessimism. We are forced to ask: is this the new normal?

Douglas A. McIntyre

Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Economy

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