Survey: Small-business owners optimistic about local economy

DENVER – Small-business owners in Colorado are more optimistic about the local economy than national, according to a new survey conducted by U.S. Bank.

The 2014 U.S. Bank Small Business Annual Survey polled during the first quarter more than 200 Colorado businesses with $10 million or less in annual revenue.

The survey showed that while 56 percent of small-business owners feel that Colorado is still in recovery, the state’s economy is better than that of the nation as a whole. Fifty-six percent also described the state’s economy in 2014 as “good,” “very good” or “excellent,” compared with one-third of business owners making that assessment in 2010.

Small-business owners here are still hesitant to make significant investments in their businesses, such as hiring, with 29 percent saying that they will add staff in the coming year, according to the survey. While low, that number is still higher than the national percentage of small business owners who say they will hire, about 20 percent.

Thirty-six percent of small-business owners in Colorado said that they were likely to make a capital expenditure in the next year, compared with 29 percent nationally.

Concern about the federal budget is still considered the top national issue in Colorado, with health-care reform following. About six in 10 business owners said that they believe the Affordable Care Act will be negative for their business in the long run.

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Molly Armbrister covers real estate, banking and health care for the Northern Colorado Business Report. She can be reached at 970-232-3139, or

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