August Hiring Ticks Downward

Month-Over-Month Hiring Was Down 0.1%

Hiring DownA new survey shows that hiring at American small businesses fell slightly during the month of August. Data from the SurePayroll Small Business Scorecard, released last week, reports that month-over-month hiring was down 0.1% in August and the average paycheck was down 0.2%. Nationwide, year-over-year hiring through August is down 1.5% and paychecks are down 1.4%.

According to the survey from SurePayroll, a payroll outsourcing firm, optimism among small business owners in August was 60%, which was down slightly from 62% in July. The SurePayroll optimism survey also found that among the respondents, 82% of small business owners did not seek lending in 2012. Of those that did, only 32% had difficulty securing lending. "For a long time, the banks have taken a beating for not lending enough to small businesses, but this data suggests the banks may not be the problem," said Michael Alter, SurePayroll's president and CEO. "There's simply not enough demand in the economy. Many small businesses don't have a reason to spend. Those businesses that do aren't having a problem getting loans."

In its survey, SurePayroll analyzes hiring data within the 35 largest metro markets in the U.S. Raleigh-Durham, NC, led the report with a 1.5% increase in its hiring index in August, while Pittsburgh, PA, was the market laggard after showing a 4.5% hiring index decrease in the month. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics will release its August jobs report this Friday.