Business Barometer®: Rise in AB Small Business Confidence Stalls in July

Provincial confidence index dips by 1.8 points, hiring intentions soften

Calgary, July 25, 2019 – The latest monthly Business Barometer® results from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business’ (CFIB) show Alberta’s small business confidence index fell by 1.8 points in July, following a near 20 point increase between January and June.

The slight dip pegs the Business Barometer for Alberta at 57.2 points, the first decline after five consecutive months of increases, and puts the provincial index just below the national indicator (57.8 points).

“While small business owners have been more optimistic in the last several months, their confidence has clearly stalled out,” says Keyli Kosiorek, Policy Analyst, Alberta. “In order to continue an upward trend, the provincial government must continue to focus on policies for economic growth, job creation, and supporting small business.”

The Alberta index (57.2) is still well below the 65 to 75 point range (on the 100 point scale) that indicates the economy is healthy and growing at its potential.

In addition to confidence cooling off in July, entrepreneurs’ intentions to hire over the next three months also saw a chill. In July, 13 per cent of business owners said they plan to increase their full-time employment (down 3 points from June), compared to 24 per cent who anticipate a decrease (up 5 points from June). 

The provincial numbers for July were: PEI (67.0), Quebec (67.0), Nova Scotia (62.5), New Brunswick (61.2), Manitoba (60.1), Alberta (57.2), Ontario (56.0), Saskatchewan (54.3), British Columbia (53.3), and Newfoundland & Labrador (50.0).

July 2019 findings are based on 710 responses, collected from a stratified random sample of CFIB members, to a controlled-access web survey. Data reflect responses received through July 15. 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 in Alberta. 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