Small Businesses Thriving Despite High Interest Rates: CBIZ Small Business Employment Index Report

Improvement in Small Business Hiring Challenges as Economy Remains Robust

Despite high interest rates, small businesses are finding it easier to hire new employees as reported by the CBIZ Small Business Employment Index. The index showed a 0.17% increase in February, indicating continued strength in the U.S. economy.

Small businesses often struggle to retain workers as they are unable to offer higher salaries or additional benefits such as health insurance. The CBIZ index monitors hiring trends among thousands of companies with 300 or fewer employees across the country.

According to Anna Rathbun, the chief investment officer of CBIZ, the unexpected strength of the U.S. economy in the face of high interest rates has allowed small businesses to steadily expand their workforce during February. About 20% of companies in the index increased their staffing levels in February, while 60% kept their headcounts the same and 20% reduced staff numbers.

Certain industries, like administrative and support services, arts and recreation, and technology and life sciences, saw hiring gains, while industries like accommodation and food services, insurance, and utilities saw decreases. Regional differences were also noted, with the West, Southeast

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