MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. — A total of 15,000 new jobs were added in the small business sector in the United States in March, according to the Intuit Quickbooks Small Business Employment Index. That’s a slight decrease from the previous month.
Over the last five years, 895,000 jobs have been added to small business sector in the United States.
“This is a modest increase in the employment level for small business – just one per cent above a year ago and far below the 2.5 per cent increase for the overall economy,” said Susan Woodward, economist with Intuit.
Hourly employees worked an average of 107.4 hours in March, 23 minutes less in comparison to February figures. Simultaneously their wages rose by two cents an hour in March, an increase of 0.1 per cent. Furthermore, the hourly wage is 2.6 per cent higher than one year ago. With inflation sitting at zero since March of last year, that represents a real wage gain over the past year.
Small business employees` pay fell by 0.16 per cent — or down by US$4.30 for the month compared to February figures. The total compensation average in March was US$2,760 per month.
“We see some softness in small business employment — fewer hourly people working full time, a decline in hours worked, and a decline in the hiring rate, despite a rise in the hourly wage and overall, a rise in employment,” Woodward said.
Overall revenues per small business fell by 0.14 per cent across all industries in February. (Revenue is reported one month behind the employment figures.) The professional services category showed the highest monthly increase in revenue at 0.2 per cent, while the real estate category had the largest revenue decline, falling to 0.5 per cent in February.
“The falling revenue we have seen over the last few months is the first such episode since revenues began expanding again in August 2008,” said Woodward. “This appears to be weather related. The revenue figures, like the employment figures, are adjusted for seasonality but not for especially bad weather."
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