AB Small Business Confidence Rises in March

Despite small increase of 1.8 points, Alberta business owners remain least confident in the country

CALGARY, March 28, 2019 – The monthly Business Barometer® index for Alberta rose in March, showing slight recovery from the significant drop seen earlier this year, according to the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB).

Small business confidence gained 1.8 points in March to reach 42.1, but continues to lag behind the national average (55.9) by 13.8 points, and remains far below the 65 to 75 point range (on the 100 point scale) which indicates a healthy and growing economy.

Hiring intentions are looking slightly better for small businesses in Alberta over the next three months. Eleven per cent of business owners are expecting their full-time employment levels to go up, representing a 2 point increase from February’s results (9 per cent). Comparatively, 60 per cent expect their full time employment level to remain the same, and 29 per cent  expect it to decrease.

“With a provincial election in full swing, Alberta’s entrepreneurs are looking for the parties to make meaningful policy commitments to help our province’s small and medium-sized business sector shake off the recession and start growing again.  Having solid economic policies will be key to reinvigorating Alberta’s business confidence” said Richard Truscott, Vice-President, Alberta and BC.

The provincial numbers for March were: Nova Scotia (66.8), Quebec (65.3), PEI (59.7), Ontario (59.5), New Brunswick (56.6), British Columbia (55.9), Manitoba (51.4), Saskatchewan (50.8), Newfoundland & Labrador (48.7), Alberta (42.1).

March 2019 findings are based on 697 responses, collected from a stratified random sample of CFIB members, to a controlled-access web survey. Data reflect responses received through March 18. Findings are statistically accurate to +/- 3.7 per cent 19 times in 20.

About CFIB
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is Canada’s largest association of small and medium-sized businesses with 110,000 members across every industry and region, including 10,000 Alberta members. CFIB is dedicated to increasing business owners’ chances of success by driving policy change at all levels of government, providing expert advice and tools, and negotiating exclusive savings. Learn more at cfib.ca.