The 2012 Outlook for black businesses is based on responses to the Gazelle Index national survey. The Gazelle Index is the first ever national quarterly survey of small-business owners. It is unique because it provides up-to-date, time sensitive business information and its results are broken down by business owners who are African American/black, Hispanics/Latino, white, women and men. The survey includes 631 responses from randomly selected CEOs, who operate businesses with 10 to 100 employees. The results have a margin of error of + or -5%; 33.6% of the respondents operate firms owned by African-Americans.
Hiring Plans: Black CEOs plan to increase hiring significantly in 2012, more so than any other race or ethnic group; 37.4% will increase hiring vs. 15.2% who will cut jobs.
Regional Hiring: Regionally, black business hiring will be strongest in the Northeast, where 43.8% of businesses intend to add workers while only 6.2% will cut payrolls. Secondly, in the South, 36.3% will add and 13.7% will cut. Hiring will be weakest in the Midwest, followed by the West.
Regional Pain of the Recession: Black businesses in the West were hardest hit by the recession; 34.6% of businesses in the West cut their workforce by 50% or more, while 25.0% in the Northeast, 23.7% in the South, and 17.9% in the Midwest did so.
Industry Distribution: The main industries among black businesses included in the survey are as follows: Management and Administrative Services, 21.2%; Construction, 19.8%; Health Care and Education, 12.3%; Transportation and Warehousing, 12.3%; Retail Trade, 8.5%; Professional and Technical Services, 8.0%; and Information Technology accounts for 8.0%.
Future Industry Hiring: the industries that plan to hire the most are as follows: Information Technology, 52.9% of businesses will hire; Construction, 50%; Management and Administrative Services, 42.2%; Health Care and Education, 38.5%; and Retail Trades 33.3%. Industries planning to cut the most include Transportation and Warehousing, and Professional and Technical Services.
Industries Most Optimistic about the future: Industries expressing the greatest future optimism are as follows: Construction, Information Technology, Management and Administers Services, and Health Care and Education.
2012 Gazelle Index Economic Forecast
- Expect to see much more hiring and economic growth in 2012
- Expect GDP to grow between 3% and 3.5% during the first half of the year.
- Expect the overall unemployment rate to decrease to 7.5% by the third quarter of 2012.
- Expect black Unemployment to remain above 13% throughout 2012.
What is driving growth? 1. The US economy has not been derailed by Euro debt crisis; 2. Corporations are starting to invest and they and still have enormous cash balances; 3. Consumers are beginning to spend more freely; 4. Housing starts and building permits are increasing; and 5. New claims for unemployment compensation are way down.