It's no secret that small business is booming — and more than ever. According to the NFIB Small Business Optimism Index in September 2018, this year has seen 45-year record high measures in the following areas: job openings, hiring plans, actual job creation, compensation increases (actual and planned), profit growth and inventory investment.
“This is the longest streak of small business optimism in history, evidence that tax cuts and regulatory rollbacks are paying off for the economy as a whole,” said NFIB President and CEO Juanita D. Duggan. “Our members say that business is booming and prospects continue to look bright.”
Plus, the Kauffman Index of 2017, which measures business startup activity in the U.S., indicates that startup activity has increased three years in a row, reaching close to the peak before the Great Recessions.
Let's take a closer look behind these trends.
Growth Among Metro Areas
According to the Kauffman Index, 29 of the 40 metro areas studied saw an increase in startup activity, while the other 11 fell.
The five metro areas with the highest startup activity were (in order): Miami, Austin, Los Angeles, San Diego and Las Vegas. As you can see, big cities in the Southern half of the U.S. look to be performing well.
Those cities with the biggest upward movement in the Startup Activity Rankings were St. Louis, Cleveland and San Antonio. Areas that saw large ranking decreases were Baltimore and Nashville.
As for the rate of new entrepreneurs, it varied quite a bit across metro areas: There were 110 new entrepreneurs per every 100,000 adults in the Jacksonville area in a given month, but a whopping 560 new entrepreneurs for every 100,000 adults in Los Angeles and Miami.
Starting a Business in 2018: Top States
If you’re looking at starting a business in 2018, states where small business growth is booming are sources of inspiration.
According to data from the Small Business Association (SBA), states with the most new establishments this year were California (47,250), Florida (20,880), Texas (18,499), New York (14,417), Georgia (7,830) and Illinois (7,597).
Those small businesses in California alone created 135,492 jobs in 2018, while those in Florida created 88,109. Here are the job creation numbers for the remaining top states:
Texas - 80,792
New York - 50,848
Georgia - 34,863
Illinois - 31,194
With the spurt in growth among small businesses, the current unemployment rate is at a low 3.7 percent (as of October 2018).
Business Opportunities in 2018
As you might imagine, you can have confidence that now is a great time to jump-start your own entrepreneurial pursuits.
Exactly how easy is it to start a business? In our digital economy, you can start, for example, a blog business from the comfort of your own home. And with more entrepreneurial tools and resources than ever before, you’ll have an easier time striking out on your own. Signs show that business opportunities are growing and will continue to do so.