Taxes and insurance top cost concerns for small businesses

But small business optimism on the rise in Canada

Taxes and insurance continue to be two top cost concerns of Canadian independent businesses.

According to the Canadian Federation of Independent Business’s (CFIB) February 2013 Business Barometer Index, 60% of small to mid-size entrepreneurs consider taxes and regulations a major cost constraint.

Read: Insurance advice for small businesses 

Meanwhile, insurance was ranked by 45% of survey respondents as a top cost concern. Fuel/Energy and wages ranked higher than insurance as a major constraint at 60% and 46% respectively.

Rounding out the top five major cost constraints was banking at 42%.

Though these issues are of concern to Canadian businesses, small business optimism is on the rise in Canada. CFIB’s Business Barometer Index rose to 66.2 in February, up half a point from January’s index and almost four points on the December 2012 index.

“A scale between 0 and 100, an index above 50 means owners expecting their business’ performance to be stronger in the next year outnumber those expecting weaker performance,” explains the report. “One normally sees an index level of between 65 and 70 when the economy is growing at its potential.”

Those in the professional and enterprise services showed the highest business optimism at an index of 72.9.

Those in the financial, insurance and real estate sectors were slightly less optimistic, at an index level of 67.9.

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