TORONTO, Feb. 3 /CNW/ - Business confidence among Canada's small and medium-sized businesses made up for some lost ground in January, providing further evidence of continuing modest growth in the economy. According to the latest business confidence survey findings from the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB), the Business Barometer(R) index rose to 66.9 in January, up from last month's index score of 63.7 and nearing levels seen in the September-to-November 2009 period.
According to CFIB's vice-president of research and chief economist, Ted Mallett, January's index level is equivalent to an expected Canadian GDP growth rate in the 2.0 to 2.5 per cent range.
"Of the 13 industry categories which comprise the index, 10 have demonstrated improvements in confidence," explained Mallett. "The most optimistic owners continue to be in professional and business services, along with healthcare and education services, each with index levels above 70. On the other hand, the least optimistic business owners are in the agriculture, primary industries and restaurant and accommodation sectors, all with index scores well below 60," he said.
This index is available provincially and by industry. Results and the full report are available at: http://www.cfib-fcei.ca/english/barometer
Measured on a scale between 0 and 100, an index level above 50 means owners expecting their businesses' performance to be stronger in the next year outnumber those expecting weaker performance. According to past results, index levels normally range between 65 and 75 when the economy is growing. The January 2010 findings are based on 1,049 responses, collected from a stratified random sample of CFIB members, to a controlled-access web survey. Findings are statistically accurate to +/- 3.0 per cent 19 times in 20.
Business Barometer is a monthly publication of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business and is a registered trademark.
SOURCE Canadian Federation of Independent Business
For further information: For further information: or to arrange an interview with Ted Mallett, contact Meghan Carrington or Adam Miller at (416) 222-8022