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Hiring challenges for small businesses improving with continued economic strength

Small businesses are slowly adding to their workforce as the U.S. economy continues to perform well despite high interest rates, according to the latest data from the CBIZ Small Business Employment Index. In February, there was a seasonally adjusted increase of 0.17%, indicating that small businesses are beginning to retain employees and offer competitive salaries and benefits like health insurance.

The CBIZ index monitors hiring trends among thousands of companies with 300 or fewer employees across the country. Anna Rathbun, the chief investment officer of CBIZ, says that the unexpected strength of the U.S. economy is reflected in the steady expansion of small business workforces in February.

Certain industries are faring better than others in terms of hiring, with sectors such as administrative and support services, arts and entertainment, and technology and life sciences experiencing gains. Conversely, industries like accommodation and food services, insurance, and utilities saw decreases in hiring.

Regionally, the West, Southeast, and Central regions saw slight increases in hiring, while the Northeast region experienced a slight decline. This trend in small business hiring aligns with the broader market, as U.S. employers added 275,000 jobs in February, surpassing expectations and demonstrating the resilience of the U.S. economy in the face of high interest rates

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