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Small businesses in the US are slowly overcoming their hiring challenges, thanks to the strength of the country’s economy. In February, the CBIZ Small Business Employment Index reported a seasonally adjusted increase of 0.17%, indicating that small businesses are expanding their workforces despite difficulties in retaining workers due to constraints such as low salaries and limited benefits like health insurance. The index monitors hiring activities among thousands of companies with 300 or fewer employees nationwide.

Anna Rathbun, CBIZ’s chief investment officer, said that the U.S.’s robust economy has led small businesses to steadily increase their hiring during February. Around 20% of companies in the index hired more employees, while 60% maintained their headcounts and 20% reduced staff. Some industries saw growth in hiring, such as administrative and support services, arts, entertainment, recreation, and technology and life sciences, while others like accommodation and food services, insurance, and utilities experienced declines.

Regionally, the West, Southeast, and Central regions witnessed slight increases in hiring, while the Northeast region saw a slight decline. This hiring trend among small businesses reflects the broader market trends where U.S employers added 275,000 jobs in February exceeding expectations by demonstrating the resilience of the U.S economy in high interest rate environment. This job growth was higher than revised gain of 229 thousand jobs added in January.

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