New Survey of Small Business Attitudes

Sander Daniels sends along this press release:

Thumbtack.com surveyed 6,022 small businesses across the United States. The survey asked questions about the friendliness of states towards small business and about small business finances, such as: “In general, how would you rate your state’s support of small business owners?” “Would you discourage or encourage someone from starting a new business in your state?” and “How would you rate your company’s financial situation today?”

Details of the survey are here, and these are some of their findings:

Texas had three of the top five cities (Dallas, San Antonio and Austin), while California was home to the bottom three (Los Angeles, San Diego and Sacramento).
Colorado Springs and Washington, D.C. had the nation’s healthiest small businesses. Small businesses said licensing requirements were nearly twice as important as tax rates in determining overall business-friendliness. Among small business owners nationally, women were 9% more likely than men to feel supported by their state governments. The single best predictor of small business friendliness was whether small business owners are aware of the state or local government offering training programs for small businesses. Nationwide, small businesses owned by politically conservative entrepreneurs were 17% healthier than small businesses owned by politically liberal entrepreneurs.

I don’t know what to make of all of this—-who knows what to make of their sample or the responses to these questions?—-but I’m impressed that they seem to describe exactly what they did. They even post their (anonymized) data online.

[Cross-posted at The Monkey Cage]

Andrew Gelman

Andrew Gelman is a professor of statistics and political science and director of the Applied Statistics Center at Columbia University.