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Business owners are feeling better

Business owners are feeling 14 percent better about the future today than two years ago, thanks to stronger financial results and expectations that the numbers will be even more robust next year.

That’s the word from Principal Financial Group’s Well-Being Index, which found that a whopping 88 percent of the 600 owners surveyed reported their businesses were either stable or growing.

The Well-Being Index respondents weren’t nearly so bullish in 2012. Just a quarter of them said they were optimistic about the 2013 economy. This year, 40 percent expressed optimism for 2015, 53 percent said their financials were in better shape than a year ago, and 71 percent reported having surplus business capital, up from 62 percent last time around.

Things are better at home, as well, for businesses employing between 10 and 500 people. Asked to describe their personal financial health, 75 percent said they were in good shape, up 4 percentage points from a year ago.

“With a positive outlook for the future of their businesses, almost half (46 percent) of business owners are reinvesting profits back into their companies to help secure the future of their businesses,” The Principal said. “Additionally, some business owners are safeguarding their companies’ futures by enhancing their firms’ technology (37 percent), or taking steps to protect their businesses from unexpected losses (36 percent).”

These folks are on a hiring spree as well, with 41 percent reporting that they added full-time staff in the past year and 41 percent indicating they would add to staff in 2015. Top reasons cited for adding to staff:

  • Increased customer demand (37 percent);
  • High volumes of business (36 percent);
  • Confidence in future growth (31 percent).

About the Author


Will Temby

Will has enjoyed a 20-year career in leadership positions in the hospitality and travel industry throughout the U.S. with the Hyatt, Sheraton, Hilton, Renaissance and Steamboat Ski and Resort corporations. Will received a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. From 2000-2007, he served as President and CEO of the Greater Colorado Springs Chamber of Commerce. He also served as Vice President-Special Projects for the University of Colorado Foundation from 2007 to 2009. Will is a past Chair of the Board of Directors of the National Homeland Defense Foundation and former member of the United States Chamber of Commerce Committee of 100. He is married to Nan, has five wonderful children, and enjoys coaching, traveling, hiking, golfing and skiing.

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