U.S. small-business owners are slightly less pessimistic about their outlook, and in the face of continuing weak sales they do not plan to boost capital spending or employment, a monthly survey of small businesses showed. The National Federation of Independent Business’ optimism index rose 3.8 points in April to 90.6, but the gain is not enough to signal that a solid recovery is in place, the association said on Tuesday.
Nevertheless, the latest report showed the optimism index rose above 90 for the first time in months. The index was below 90 for 22 of the last 25 months, including 18 consecutive months prior to the April reading. Nine of the 10 index components were up, compared with March.