Taxes replaced the cost of insurance as the most frequently cited single most important problem faced by small business, according to the latest Ohio Small-Business Conditions report.
The data, which was released by the National Federation of Independent Business/Ohio, provides an overview of small-business conditions within Ohio and compares them with neighboring states.
Eighteen percent of the state’s small employers said that taxes were their most important problem, compared to 11 percent in June, while the number who considered the cost of insurance to be the single most important problem dropped from 18 percent in June to 13 percent in the latest report.
“Clearly, the early data shows that the tax reform package enacted this year did not address the concerns of small business,” said Ty Pine, NFIB/Ohio state director. “And we can see from other survey results that small-business owners have adopted a wait-and-see attitude toward Ohio’s approach to small business.”
The net percent (percent positive minus percent negative) of small-business owners who believe that the state’s overall business environment is “supportive” remained stable at a net 11 percent but relatively low compared to Indiana (net 28 percent), and comparable to Michigan and Pennsylvania (net 8 percent and net 10 percent respectively). In Ohio, the net percent of those who reported business conditions in their market to be “good” was a net 20 percent, lower than Indiana (net 29 percent) and Pennsylvania (net 30 percent), but much better than Michigan at a net 2 percent.
The net percent of those reporting that both sales and profits were “good” also remained stable. However, there are indications that pressure on profits may be coming, as a net 55 percent said their purchasing prices had increased, while a net 16 percent said they had raised their selling prices.
On a positive note, more than one-third of respondents have invested in capital equipments and employee training, and 17 percent of respondents currently have job openings.