78% of Small Businesses Say Higher Taxes May Cause Them to Downsize, Survey Says

Fall 2017 Small Business Owner Report - 78% Say Downsizing Business Is Due to Higher Taxes

Taxes can make a major impact on business decisions, according to a new report from Bank of America (NYSE:BAC).

Fall 2017 Small Business Owner Report

The Bank of America Business Advantage Small Business Owner Report is a semi-annual survey of 1,000 business owners across the country. The fall 2017 report found that 78 percent of entrepreneurs consider taxes to be impactful when it comes to making decisions about downsizing. On a larger scale, 92 percent of small business owners said that a positive economic environment is critical for their ability to grow.

So essentially, economic factors can have a major impact on business decisions. Things like tax rates can make the difference between a small business expanding or taking a step back. And in turn, those business decisions can make an impact on the economy, as growing businesses are more likely to contribute to job growth and other positive changes. So increased tax rates can actually have an even larger impact on the economy than some previously thought.

However, while those factors can certainly make an impact, they’re not necessarily leading to any negative effects right now. According to the Bank of America survey, 71 percent of small business owners are confident that their year end revenue for 2017 will exceed their year end revenue for 2016. And 51 percent of small business owners have plans to grow their businesses in the next five years.

Sharon Miller, head of small business at Bank of America said in an email to Small Business Trends, “Anything that increases capital for small business owners — a positive economic environment, a reduced tax rate, high customer demand — enables them to invest more in their businesses, ultimately leading to growth and expansion. Our survey also found the inverse is true with respect to factors that decrease cash flow. A negative economic environment, taxes viewed as overly burdensome and the inability to attract and retain quality employees can all be influential factors in a small business owner’s decision to downsize.”

Image: Bank of America

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Annie Pilon Annie Pilon is a Senior Staff Writer for Small Business Trends, covering entrepreneur profiles, interviews, feature stories, community news and in-depth, expert-based guides. When she’s not writing she can be found exploring all that her home state of Michigan has to offer.

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