News Column

Small Business Employment Increases

Dec 3, 2012

U.S. small business employment saw an increase of 30,000 jobs in November, while hours worked and compensation also rose. Small business revenue fell 0.3 percent in October, continuing a decline that began in February.

These are among the results for the monthly Intuit Inc. (Nasdaq: INTU) Small Business Employment and Revenue Indexes, which together provide a current picture of the economic health of the nation's small businesses.

The Small Business Employment Index indicates that employment rose by 0.14 percent in November, equating to an annualized growth rate of 1.7 percent. Average monthly compensation grew by 0.5 percent, or $14. Average monthly hours worked increased by 0.11 percent, or six minutes. The index is based on data from Intuit Online Payroll and QuickBooks Online Payroll, covering the period from January 2007 through Nov. 23.

"The results are definitely mixed for small businesses," said Susan Woodward, the economist who worked with Intuit to create the indexes. "We began seeing some employment gains in April 2010, but between March and September 2012, the numbers began to drop again. The good news is they are back up for October and November."

Increase in Hours Worked, Compensation

Small business hourly employees worked an average of 110.1 hours in November, up slightly from the revised figure of 110 hours in October, making for a 25.4-hour workweek.

Average monthly pay for small business employees rose to $2,861 in November, up 0.5 percent from the October revised figure of $2,847 per month. This equates to an increase of $14, up from the decrease of $3 seen from September to October. The equivalent annual wages would be about $34,300 per year, which is part-time work for many small business employees.

Small Business Employment by Geography

The Employment Index showed growth in all U.S. census divisions, except the West North Central, East North Central and New England regions, where the number of jobs declined. A breakdown of states tracked by the index showed the largest employment increases in Maryland and Utah, while Michigan and Kansas saw the largest decreases.

U.S. Census Division Percent Change in Employment

East North Central - 0.05%

West North Central - 0.02%

Middle Atlantic + 0.01%

Mountain + 0.07%

New England - 0.1%

Pacific + 0.04%

South Atlantic + 0.01%

East South Central + 0.03%

West South Central + 0.06% -------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Small Business Employment by U.S. Census Division saw growth in most parts of the country. The data reflects employment from approximately 170,000 small business employers, a subset of small businesses that use Intuit Online Payroll and QuickBooks Online Payroll. The month-to-month changes are seasonally adjusted and informative about the overall economy.

Change in Employment

State (%)

Alabama 0.06

Arizona 0.11

California 0.05

Colorado 0.09

Connecticut -0.11

Florida 0.02

Georgia 0.02

Illinois -0.01

Indiana 0.06

Iowa -0.03

Kansas -0.16

Kentucky 0.03

Louisiana -0.11

Maryland 0.15

Massachusetts -0.11

Michigan -0.19

Minnesota -0.02

Missouri 0.12

Nevada 0.04

New Jersey -0.08

New York 0.01

North Carolina -0.03

Ohio -0.09

Oklahoma 0.12

Oregon -0.02

Pennsylvania 0.06

South Carolina 0.08

Tennessee 0

Texas 0.08

Utah 0.13

Virginia -0.11

Washington 0.02

Wisconsin -0.07 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------

October Change in Sector Revenue (%)

All -0.3

Real estate and rental and leasing -0.9

Health care and social assistance -0.7

Other services -0.6

Professional, scientific, and technical services -0.6

Accommodation, food services, and drinking places -0.5

Retail trade -0.5

Construction -0.4

Source: Copyright Business Wire 2012

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