Why Mom and Pop Are Afraid to Hire You

By Rivlin, Gary | Newsweek, May 30, 2011 | Go to article overview

Why Mom and Pop Are Afraid to Hire You


Rivlin, Gary, Newsweek


Byline: Gary Rivlin

Just what will it take for small businesses to join the recovery?

Raymond Arth knows he should feel better about the economy. Sales are up at Phoenix Products, the faucet company he runs in a suburb west of Cleveland. He had a good 2010, and he's on pace to have an even better 2011. His company hasn't returned to its pre-recession revenues selling its wares to the makers of RVs and manufactured homes, but Phoenix Products is making a profit again and has enough orders that Arth decided to add eight workers to his core staff of 25 full-time employees. So why are the new hires all temp workers?

Like too many other small-business proprietors, Arth doesn't fully trust this economic recovery. While he says he's "guardedly optimistic" about it, his actions are all about the first half of that phrase. He worries that rising gas prices will tamp down RV sales. The volatility in the price of metals and other commodities has brought a spike in the cost of his raw materials. "There's still just too much uncertainty out there," Arth says.

In the Labor Department's latest snapshot of the country's job market, the private sector added 268,000 jobs in April, the largest gain in five years and the third consecutive month of solid job growth. Austan Goolsbee, chairman of the president's Council of Economic Advisers, says the economy is clearly on track, despite an unemployment rate of 9 percent.

Yet a more sobering account of where the economy might be headed--and arguably a more accurate barometer of the near-term future--is the monthly report published by the National Federation of Independent Business. After all, it's small businesses, which have created two out of every three new jobs the economy has added since the early 1990s, that historically have led the country out of recessions. And it's the owners of small businesses (defined as enterprises with fewer than 500 employees) that the NFIB surveys each month for its Small Business Optimism Index.

On that front the news is anything but good. The index is down for the second straight month. Fewer small-business owners expect conditions to improve over the next half year--a drop of 18 percentage points from January.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Why Mom and Pop Are Afraid to Hire You
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.