Finance & Economics

North American small business owners predictions on recession

79% of small business owners say no recession until spring 2020 or later


North American small business owners predictions on recession. Source:

Despite dire predictions from economists of a looming recession, most small business owners remain optimistic, according to, the small business network with 4 million members. Most Alignable members polled in a series of Alignable New Voice Of Small Business Surveys predict a recession is at least six months to a year or more away.

Meanwhile, many are redoubling their efforts to earn as much as possible during this still-strong economy. In all, 16,000 small business owners participated in the polls. Here are the top trends that emerged:

  • 79% of small business owners who made a prediction, said a recession won’t come until at least March or April of 2020. And 46% predicted a recession is at least a year away. Several added that experts talking so much about a recession induces spending fears among consumers, which could expedite a potential downturn.
  • 74% of small business owners expect to achieve year-over-year sales spikes of 5% to 50% or more by year’s end. In fact, 19% think 2019 will be their best sales year ever. And 45% expect a revenue boost of at least 20-30%.
  • 51% of small business owners engage in side hustles. The majority of SMB owners said side jobs have helped them either as they started their businesses or on an ongoing basis. Another 18% are thinking about taking on a side gig now to boost their income.

A wide variety of small business owners across several industries expect to experience record-breaking sales by the end of the year. They include travel agents who specialize in nature adventures, a manufacturer of fly fishing gear, event planners, business coaches, accountants, construction companies, and residential, as well as commercial real estate agents.

In contrast, categories anticipating year-over-year declines are agriculture, dog breeding, high-end art, and some car dealerships. Vape store owners are experiencing the biggest struggles, expecting sales to plummet by 50% or more, given recent bans and negative press around vaping.

In terms of geography, Quebec, British Columbia, Ontario, New Brunswick, and Newfoundland & Labrador have the highest number of Canadian economic optimists based on Alignable’s polls. Most businesspeople from these provinces anticipate sales boosts of 20% to more than 50% by the end of 2019.

In the US, the top 20 states where optimism about year-end sales is the highest, include: Alaska, Idaho, Hawaii, Kentucky, New Mexico, Utah, New Jersey, Nevada, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Missouri, Indiana, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Colorado, Georgia, New Hampshire and West Virginia.

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