Despite the problems in the stock market, U.S. small-business owners have become more optimistic, according to the Wells Fargo/Gallup Small Business Index. The current reading is up from last quarter and almost back to where it was one year ago, ending three consecutive quarters of declines in optimism.
The Small Business Index fell sharply in 2008 and continued dropping through the recession, but rose steadily from early 2013 to the beginning of last year. By the second quarter of 2015, however, small-business owners' optimism began to drop again, before rising this quarter.
This quarter's increase is linked to an uptick in small-business owners' perceptions of their cash flow, The current figure 60 percent of owners who report a "very good" or "somewhat good" cash flow is the highest since the fourth quarter of 2007.