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NFIB Weekly News

NFIB Weekly News Leading the News

Business Optimism Continues At Record Highs. (03/13/2018)

NFIB’s Small Business Economic Trends Survey for February shows that business optimism rose to 107.6, continuing its streak of record highs that include a jump in the number of small business owners increasing compensation and capital outlays. NFIB President and CEO Juanita Duggan is quoted saying, “When small business owners have confidence and certainty in the economy, they’re able to hire more workers and invest in their businesses. ... The historically high readings indicate that policy changes – lower taxes and fewer regulations – are transformative for small businesses. After years of standing on the sidelines and not benefiting from the so-called recovery, Main Street is on fire again.” Chief Economist Bill Dunkelberg is quoted saying, “The fact that several components saw significant increases tells us that small businesses are flourishing in a way we haven’t seen in over a decade.”

Business Climate

Trump: EU, Japan Must Treat US Better On Trade If They Want Tariff Exemptions. (03/13/2018)

Bloomberg News (3/10, Strauss) reported President Trump on Saturday tweeted, “The European Union, wonderful countries who treat the U.S. very badly on trade, are complaining about the tariffs on Steel & Aluminum. If they drop their horrific barriers & tariffs on U.S. products going in, we will likewise drop ours. Big Deficit. If not, we Tax Cars etc. FAIR!” According to Bloomberg, Trump’s tweets came after European Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmstrom and Japanese Trade Minister Hiroshige Seko met with USTR Lighthizer for what Malmstrom later “called ‘frank’ but fruitless talks.”

According to The Hill (3/10, Greenwood), “Trump has fielded calls with a number of foreign leaders in recent days,” including Abe, French President Emmanuel Macron, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Argentinian President Mauricio Macri, and Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, as the Administration “seeks to contain potential fallout from Trump’s decision to impose stiff tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.”

Small Business Marketing

Attorney Discusses Factors That Make Customers “Fall In Love” With Small Businesses. (03/13/2018)

In a special column for USA Today (3/9), Steve Strauss, a lawyer who specializes in working with small business clients and entrepreneurs, discussed the factors that “make someone fall in love with a small business.” Strauss said, “the best small businesses” connect with their customers and are “about more than money. They were about making a difference, and their customers not only got that, they loved them for that and rewarded them for it.”

Wages and Benefits

Administration Rolls Out New, Patient-Focused Approach To Healthcare. (03/13/2018)

The AP (3/10, Alonso-Zaldivar) reported “the Trump administration is taking a pragmatic new tack on health care,” focusing on “consumer friendly changes and savings.” Health and Human Services Secretary Azar is rolling out the agenda, which the AP stated is focuses on improving electronic medical records, lowering prescription drug costs, implementing value-focused payment systems in Medicare, and “getting true prices for health care goods and services in front of consumers” to encourage better market competition.