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What's Hot in Small Business – Chris Crum

What's Hot in Small Business – Chris Crum
Chris Crum writes for Small Business Resources about what's new for small business. Chris was a featured writer with the iEntry Network of B2B Publications where hundreds of publications linked to his articles including the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, LA Times and the New York Times.

Report: Small Business Wages on The Rise

Report: Small Business Wages on The Rise

A new report from Paychex, a provider of solutions for payroll, HR, retirement, and insurance services, indicates that small business wages are on the rise. While growth has slowed slightly, hourly earnings were up 2.91 percent year-over-year. In October 2017, weekly earnings were up 3.13 percent year-over-year. The picture from a year ago is one of improvement, though recent months have seen slower acceleration.

When it comes to regions, the West saw the fastest weekly earnings growth at 3.68 percent, though it has been averaging 3.65 for going on two years. The Midwest saw a decline of .22 percent from this past February from 3.09 percent to 2.87 percent. For hourly earnings, the West saw twelve-month growth of 3.63 percent compared to 2.48 percent for the Midwest, 2.76 percent for the Northeast, and 2.83 percent for the South.

At the state level, Florida saw weekly earnings drop significantly, while each state in the Midwest saw declines as well. California saw a 3.89 percent increase. Arizona still leads at 4.77 percent. Rounding out the top five are New York (3.45 percent), North Carolina (3.39 percent), and Michigan (3.31 percent).

The report also looked at wages for specific metropolitan areas.

"Likely affected by Hurricane Irma, Miami and Tampa are the two weakest metros for weekly earnings and hours growth in October 2017," it says. "After ranking last in hourly and weekly earnings, as well as weekly hours worked, last October, Houston was surging prior to Hurricane Harvey; earnings continue to trend in a positive direction, slowing slightly, while hours worked have stalled and are near the weakest among metros once again. Riverside, CA ranked first in hourly earnings growth in October 2017, 4.83 percent, while Chicago was last at 1.78 percent."

The top ten metros are Riverside, Phoenix, San Diego, Houston, Los Angeles, Detroit, San Francisco, Minneapolis, Washington, and Atlanta.

Among the noteworthy findings regarding wages by industry are that weekly construction earnings had been trending upward throughout 2017 after decelerating the year before. Hourly earnings in Trade, Transportation, and Utilities have improved significantly this past year as well beginning with 3.04 percent in January 2017 and climbing to 3.91 in October of the same year.

Following the broad "other services" category, the top five industries for growth are: Leisure and Hospitality; Trade, Transportation, and Utilities; Construction; Manufacturing; and Financial Activities.

The monthly report doesn't focus solely on wage growth. It also looks at jobs themselves, and in October 2017, the most stable quarter in the history of Paychex's Small Business Jobs Index was declared. The top five metros for jobs, according to the most recent findings, are: Minneapolis, Denver, Philadelphia, Houston, and Seattle.

“While generally stable, the national jobs index dropped slightly in October 2017, undoubtedly impacted to some degree by those communities recently disrupted by natural disasters,” said president and CEO Martin Mucci.

Hurricanes have obviously taken a tremendous toll on businesses, and it will be interesting to see what 2018 has in store.

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