Canadian Treasurer

June 27, 2010

TD Bank survey reveals U.S. small business owners remain hopeful

CHERRY HILL, N.J. and PORTLAND, Maine -- Despite a few lingering economic concerns and a slower than expected recovery from the recession, a majority of small business owners anticipate higher revenues and more hiring in the months ahead, according to a new survey from TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank®.

While only slightly more than half (51 percent) of American small business polled during a recent TD Bank survey said they are optimistic about the outlook for the economy, a remarkable 73 percent of respondents said that they expect to meet or exceed revenue projections in the upcoming quarter.

TD Bank's survey – which polled 300 small business owners within the bank's Maine to Florida footprint – also revealed that nearly 88 percent of respondents plan to hire more employees or keep staffing levels the same over the next quarter, with nearly 20 percent planning to add at least one new position.

Small business owners remain dedicated to keeping their business afloat and successful, with nearly half of those polled (51 percent) saying they're working more hours today than they did 12 months ago. Only 10 percent say they are working fewer hours than last year. Interestingly, despite working more hours, the majority (62 percent) of small business owners also say they are just as happy or even happier today than they were a year ago.

"TD Bank's recent survey of small business owners further solidifies what we've been hearing from our customers over the last 12 months," said Fred Graziano, Head of Retail and Small Business Banking at TD Bank. "Although they may be working longer hours, these results indicate that economic conditions are improving and may lead to higher revenues and job creation for small businesses."

Although more than 43 percent of small business owners said their business performance fell short of projections in the previous quarter, ongoing optimism revealed that 80 percent plan to maintain or increase capital investments in the upcoming year despite lingering concerns about economic performance and a drop in consumer spending.  

"Overall, we've seen a 20 percent increase in applications for credit compared to this time last year, and as the economy improves, we hope to see that number increase, leading to healthier businesses and ultimately new jobs," said Graziano. "TD Bank is committed to helping businesses grow and be successful, and we're ready to assist and lend to small businesses and help fuel the upturn of the economic recovery."



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