Small business confidence shows signs of improvement

The latest NAB SME Survey Australia – March 2009 has revealed that while business conditions for small and medium businesses are poor in every state, there are signs of optimism with business confidence for the March quarter showing moderate improvement.

The survey indicated that while business conditions fell eight points and only 19 percent of small and medium businesses reported good or very good conditions, on the whole both small and medium businesses are fairing better than large businesses in Australia, particularly in the areas of business and property.

The SME survey shows a common negative theme across all industry sectors with only a couple of sectors showing signs of weathering the storm well, which include health and business services, along with property services.

Geoff Greer, Executive General Manager of nabbusiness Australia said the government grant has helped to boost the property services industry.

“The government’s grant for first home buyers has been a welcome positive note for the economy over the last few months. This incentive has encouraged first home buyers to enter the housing market which is having a positive impact on its associated sectors, such as property services.”

However he said, with business conditions dampened by weakening consumer demand, more needs to be done to support small and medium businesses across the country.

“SMEs are most concerned about consumer demand and it will be interesting to see what affect the upcoming federal budget will have on business confidence levels,” Mr Greer said.

“It’s up to all of us as individuals, businesses, corporations and governments to do all we can to support the important SME community in Australia.”

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