Roughly 43% of small business owners gave President Joe Biden an “F” grade on his support for small business, according to the Job Creators Network’s monthly Small Business IQ poll, obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation.
The Small Business Intelligence Quotient — a measure of small business optimism where scores of 100 and 0 represent the best and worst possible conditions respectively — slid to 52.9 in November from 53.3 in September and October, returning to just above the yearly low of 52.7 set in June, according to the poll conducted by pollsters Scott Rasmussen and John McLaughlin. On a monthly basis, small business owner’s optimism about current conditions climbed 0.2 points to 55.9, but expectations about the future slipped 0.09 points to 50.6.
“Small business sentiment is souring as we enter the holiday season, which should be sending off alarm bells within the Biden administration,” Elaine Parker, president of the Job Creators Network Foundation, said in a statement to the DCNF. “Entrepreneurs are feeling pessimistic because of high inflation, the threat of tax increases associated with government programs like the proposed $400 billion illegal student loan bailout, and more government red tape.”
While 79% of small business owners described their current financial condition as excellent or good, 55% anticipated that economic conditions in the U.S. were deteriorating and 59% reported that the climate for small business was only fair or poor, according to the poll. Just over 70% reported that the U.S. economy was on course to hold steady or get worse, while 60% reported that they believed the economy was in a recession.
Small business owners considered inflation to be their biggest concern, with 49% citing it as either their first or second most important issue; next was consumers’ spending habits, which was in 31% of owners’ top two concerns, followed by operating costs at 26%, according to the poll. Wholesale price inflation has moderated since hitting a peak of 11.7% annually in March, but at 7.4% in November remains extremely elevated, and a report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics released Friday indicated that elevated prices may not fall as rapidly as some economists had hoped.
The poll sampled 500 small business owners across the country, and had a margin of error of plus or minus 4.4%.