Amidst the challenges of retaining workers, small businesses in the US are experiencing relief in the form of expanding their workforce. According to a report from CBIZ Small Business Employment Index, there was a seasonally adjusted increase of 0.17% in hiring activity among thousands of companies with 300 or fewer employees across the country in February.

The strength of the US economy in the current high-interest environment has led to small businesses steadily increasing headcount throughout February. Anna Rathbun, CBIZ’s chief investment officer, explains that about 20% of companies in the index hired more employees, while 60% maintained the number of employees and 20% reduced it.

Certain industries have seen employment growth, such as administrative and support services, arts, entertainment, recreation, and technology and life sciences. However, others such as lodging and food services, insurance and utilities experienced declines. The West, Southeast and Central regions saw a slight increase in employment while the Northeast region saw a slight decline.

This hiring trend among small businesses mirrors the broader market where U.S employers added 275,000 jobs in February beating expectations and demonstrating the U.S economy’s resilience to high interest rates. This February job gain was larger than the revised increase of 229,000 jobs in January.

By Samantha Johnson

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