What’s on the mind of the small-to-medium sized business owner for 2014? Health insurance coverage.
A study by Principal Financial indicates that business owners are fairly optimistic about 2014, but concerned about health insurance. In fact, 36 percent cited health care costs or health care reform as the number one issue that will affect their business next year. The impact of economic growth on their business was second.
Three-quarters of the business owners reported that they completely understand or understand some parts of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Asked what actions they were planning to take as the ACA kicks in, here are some of the responses:
- Take no action: 17 percent
- Don’t know what action they will take: 20 percent
- Plan to keep their workforce under 50 employees: 22 percent
- Will start offering health care benefits: 8 percent
The research revealed that about a third of the business owners are feeling optimistic about business conditions overall for 2014, and 55 percent said they thought their financials would be better a year from now as the economy continues to rebound.
While last year 42 percent planned to add to their staff, now, just 35 percent see themselves hiring in the next year.