SOURCE: SurePayroll

SurePayroll

December 29, 2014 05:00 ET

SurePayroll Small Business Scorecard®: Optimism, Profitability Soar

4 in 5 Business Owners Optimistic About the Economy

GLENVIEW, IL--(Marketwired - December 29, 2014) - Small business owners with 1-10 employees are more optimistic about the economy than they have been in two years, according to the December 2014 SurePayroll Small Business Scorecard® optimism survey. As many as 79 percent said they are optimistic, up from 70 percent a year ago and dramatically increased from an abysmal 55 percent in 2012.

SurePayroll Inc., a leader in providing online payroll to small businesses nationwide since 2000, releases its Scorecard monthly, giving an exclusive perspective on hiring and wage data from microbusinesses, a key driver of the economy.

Profits and revenue back up the optimism expressed by small business owners. The survey found 61 percent had a profitable 2014 and 71 percent were more profitable in the second half of the year than the first half.

Looking forward to 2015, 7 in 10 expect increased profitability, and more than 40 percent of those plan to hire new staff on their payroll.

"For much of the year we saw optimism in the high 60s, so for it to nearly hit 80, that's a significant milestone going into the New Year," said SurePayroll General Manager Andy Roe. "The jump in profitability in the second half of this year really suggests they've got some momentum going and that could result in more hiring next year as well." 

About half of small business owners are still concerned about slow economic growth posing a challenge in 2015, according to the survey, however there have been some significant shifts compared to last year at this time.

  • Only 36 percent said health care reform would pose their greatest challenge next year, compared to 55 percent a year ago.
  • Just 21 percent see the federal budget as their greatest challenge, compared to 38 percent in 2013.
  • Last year, 27 percent said they would hire more independent contractors (1099s) than they did the year before. This year that number has dropped to 18 percent, suggesting there may be more full-time hiring.

Small business hiring wound up down just 0.4 percent for the year, according to Scorecard data. The South and Western regions of the country, however, saw increases of 0.7 and 0.8 percent. The average paycheck ended the year down 1.8 percent, though it was up 0.4 in the South.

As the first economic indicator created by a payroll company, the SurePayroll Scorecard has provided a monthly look at national hiring and paycheck trends since October 2004. SurePayroll's Scorecard compiles data from small businesses nationwide, and exclusively reflects the trends affecting the nation's "micro businesses" -- those with 1-10 employees. The average business reflected has six employees.

The full SurePayroll Small Business Scorecard -- Main Street Matters infographic includes data for SurePayroll's top MSAs, as well as monthly and year-over-year trends in hiring and paychecks. The December 2014 Scorecard is available now on the SurePayroll blog.

About SurePayroll
SurePayroll is the trusted provider of easy online payroll services to small businesses nationwide. Whether a business has 1, 10, or 100 employees, SurePayroll delivers peace of mind by combining innovative, industry-leading technology and personalized support from an award-winning, U.S.-based customer care team. SurePayroll also provides private-label and co-branded services for accountants and banking partners as well as offering efficient online solutions for managing 401(k) plans, health insurance, workers' compensation, employee screening and more. SurePayroll is a wholly owned subsidiary of Paychex. For more information, please visit www.SurePayroll.com. Follow us on Twitter -- Circle us on Google+ -- Connect with us on LinkedIn -- Like us on Facebook.

About Paychex
Paychex, Inc. (NASDAQ: PAYX) is a leading provider of payroll, human resource, insurance, and benefits outsourcing solutions for small- to medium-sized businesses. The company offers comprehensive payroll services, including payroll processing, payroll tax administration, and employee pay services, including direct deposit, check signing, and Readychex®. Human resource services include 401(k) plan recordkeeping, section 125 plans, a professional employer organization, time and attendance solutions, and other administrative services for business. A variety of business insurance products, including group health and workers' compensation, are made available through Paychex Insurance Agency, Inc. Paychex was founded in 1971. With headquarters in Rochester, New York, the company has more than 100 offices serving approximately 580,000 payroll clients as of May 31, 2014. For more information about Paychex and our products, visit www.paychex.com.

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