Welcome to the Small Business Run Down. Each day, we bring you stories that impact small business owners and their workforce.
October is almost over … but we’re still talking about the impact of trade tensions and tariffs on the economy. Meanwhile, in other parts of Washington, D.C., a group of lawmakers are looking at other ways to spur the economy: through the creation of more ex-con-owned companies.
Tariffs strain American manufacturing sector
The National Association for Business Economics released a new survey indicating that the U.S. manufacturing sector is experiencing negative impacts from tariffs imposed on U.S. trading partners. For the most part, business leaders aren’t letting the strain impact their plans for the future, with two-thirds of firms reporting that they don’t plan to plans for hiring or investment.
The Number: 35%. Overall, 35% of respondents report being negatively impacted by tariffs. The share rises to two-thirds, however, when just the manufacturing sector is polled.
The Quote: “After more than a year since the U.S. first imposed new tariffs on its trading partners, higher tariffs are disrupting business conditions, especially in the goods-producing sector.”
House crafting legislation to turn convicts into CEOs
Federal lawmakers are putting together legislation aimed at giving more ex-convicts the tools and support they need to start their own businesses. The House Committee on Small Business heard testimony from former inmates who pointed out that, given the stigma of incarceration, starting a business is often the only choice that former prisoners have for finding work. The “Prison to Proprietorship” bills direct SBA partners to train people both behind bars and throughout the re-entry process.
The Number: $5,000. The state of Michigan gives businesses a $5,000 tax credit for every former prisoner hired.
The Quote: “Those of us who have been in the drug dealing business, we have a business acumen, we just need to clean it up.”
9 out of 10 workers admit to showing up sick
‘Tis the season … cold and flu season, that is. And despite the highly contagious nature of these common viruses, an overwhelming majority of workers admit to coming to work while sick. In fact, 33% of survey respondents say they always go to work when sick. The biggest offenders? Millennials. Don’t forget to stock up on hand sanitizer when you’re placing your next order for office supplies.
The Number: 54%. Too much work to do is the biggest reason (54%) that employees come to work sick, while 40% of workers don’t want to use their sick leave.
The Quote: “Whether it’s due to large workloads, pressure from the boss or because they can’t afford to take time off, it’s all too common for employees to come to the office feeling sick when they really should be resting.”