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Survey: majority of small- and mid-size businesses expect improvements

November 19, 2013
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Survey: majority of small- and mid-size businesses expect improvements
Jennifer Kluge. Courtesy MBPA

The majority of small and mid-size businesses in Michigan expect their business to continue improving in the next year, according to a statewide survey.

The annual economic pulse survey seeks to provide a window into the economic triumphs, challenges and anticipations of small- to medium-size business owners.

The survey was conducted by the Michigan Business & Professional Association and the Michigan Food & Beverage Association.

The survey was distributed to thousands of association members via fax and email, giving them about 45 days to reply.

Most members of the MBPA are small- to medium-sized businesses in Michigan, representing a cross section of fields: attorneys, physicians, architects, accountants, construction companies, banks, retailers, wholesalers and manufacturers.

What the survey revealed this year is a continued trend of “cautiously optimistic” perspectives that emerged in 2011, said Jennifer Kluge, MBPA and MFBA president and CEO.

Forty-seven percent of the respondents said their business had improved this year, and 67 percent said they expect their business to continue improving in the next year.

However, 53 percent also said they believe Michigan’s business climate will remain stagnant for another year, while 34 percent believe it will see improvements.

Overall, business appears to be improving, but it’s probably been slower than many would have liked, Kluge said.

“I think that’s pretty remarkable, considering that there has been a lot of uncertainty around health care reform and the cost effect on their business,” Kluge said. “Michigan is definitely on a comeback.”

Kluge added that there are several growing sectors in the state: alternative energy, health care, technology, manufacturing, food and beverage.

The survey also revealed that 87 percent of respondents are not planning to relocate their businesses to another state.

“I think the good news is that the majority of Michigan business owners are here to stay,” Kluge said. “They are not thinking of leaving the state and that’s due to the elimination of the Michigan Business Tax — something that our association fought for — as well as an improved business climate and the state’s improving economy. Keeping existing businesses here, and supporting new companies, is so important to our state.”

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