Small Business
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PNC Economic Outlook Survey --
Spring 2012
Help Wanted: Optimistic Small Business Owners Plan Hiring Amid Expectations for More Sales and Capital Spending

Survey Results:
National Overview
New Jersey
North Carolina
Previous Outlook Surveys
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Key Findings:

An upbeat outlook on sales will prompt nearly one in three U.S. small business owners to add employees over the next six months as their optimism returns to positive levels unseen since before the 'Great Recession' of 2008-2009, according to the PNC Economic Outlook survey's newest findings.

Outlook Brightens on Sales, Profits

Nearly six in 10 (58%) expect their sales to increase in the next six months, up sharply from last fall (40%). Just 10% expect sales to decrease, which is significantly lower than last fall (20%). Profits are also on the rebound, as 43% expect an increase compared to 29% in the fall.

Continued Price Hikes Could Lead to Inflation

Inflation expectations remain elevated, as two in five owners (40%) plan to raise their selling prices, while only seven percent intend to cut prices, indicating a significant rise in pricing pressures.