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Optimism among small businesses plummets amid coronavirus crisis

Michael McGrady | The Center Square

Optimism among small businesses has fallen dramatically thanks to the economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The National Federation of Independent Business' Small Business Optimism Trends Index fell 8.1 points in March, which is the most significant decline in the index's history.

In the first month of entirely disrupted business operations during the coronavirus pandemic, the index fell to 96.4.  

NFIB also announced that nine out of the 10 components to the index declined, which is evidence that COVID-19's economic disruptions are escalating "on Main Street" as several small businesses struggle to stay open. For the small business sector, too, the economic disruption is expected to continue going forward

NFIB Colorado Director Tony Gagliardi responded to the national SBET numbers, saying that the report is "not surprising," and the COVID-19 virus has ultimately changed small businesses.  

“The report’s results are not surprising and are one more confirmation of how fast a virus can take a nation from the best of times to the worst of times,” Gagliardi  said. 

“Up until March, small business job creation, worker compensation, and plans to expand were at highs never seen before,” he said. “No longer. Right now would be a good time for Colorado policymakers to come together to develop a master plan for business survival in this state.”