By Saabira Chaudhuri U.S. small business employment increased 0.11% in January, while overall revenue dropped 0.4% in December, according to new data from Intuit Inc. The January employment increase represents 20,000 new jobs added and an annualized growth rate of 1.3%.On a seasonally adjusted basis, average monthly compensation fell by 0.2% in January, or $ 6, compared with the increase of $ 13 seen in December.Average monthly hours worked decreased by 0.9%, or almost one hour, compared with the increase of five minutes seen last month. The index is based on data from Intuit Online Payroll and QuickBooks Online Payroll, covering the period from Dec. 24 through Jan. 23.”Given the continuing high levels of unemployment, we can expect little to no impact on small business wages and employment levels from the return of the employee payroll tax to its previous level,” said Susan Woodward, the economist who worked with Intuit to create the indexes. “Instead, we will be much more likely to see a decline in the consumption spending of employees, who will be taking home less money.”Small business hourly employees worked an average of 105.1 hours in January, down slightly from the revised figure of 106.1 hours in December, making for a 24.3-hour workweek.Average monthly pay for small business employees dropped to $ 2,676 in January, down 0.2% from the December revised figure of $ 2,682 a month. The equivalent annual wages would be about $ 32,100 per year, which is part-time work for almost half of small business employees.For December, Intuit noted construction was the sole industry to see a revenue increase at 0.3%. The real estate and retail industries saw the biggest dropoffs, at 0.8% each. This index is based on data from QuickBooks Online and covers the period from Dec. 1 to Dec. 31.For the entire year, the construction industry was the only one with increased revenue, reporting a 3.1% rise, compared with a decline of 1.8% for small businesses overall. The retail and health-care sectors reported the biggest decreases over the past year with a 5% and 3.8% decline, respectively. Write to Saabira Chaudhuri at [email protected]
WSJ.com: Small Business
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