African-American Small Business Owners Hopeful About 2012

Nationwide survey indicates they are more likely than other groups to enhance employee benefits.

Posted: 12/13/2011 05:14 PM EST

If you think you’re unprepared for retirement, you’re probably not alone. And if you work for a Black small business owner, help could be on the way.


According to a survey by Nationwide Financial, 78 percent of African-American small business owners say the number of workers financially unprepared for retirement is at “crisis levels.”


The survey, however, which interviewed 501 small business owners, including 200 African-Americans, found that Black small business owners are twice as likely as other owners to say they plan on enhancing benefits for their employees, and are twice as likely to provide more access to 401(k)-type plans within the next 12 to 24 months.


Although most African-American business owners said their businesses were negatively impacted within the past 12 to 24 months, they still had a relatively high level of optimism and believed, more than other small business owners, that their sales and revenue would grow rather than decline. Additionally, 38 percent of African-American small business owners expect their business to grow in the next year, compared to 21 percent of all other small business owners.


They are also twice as likely as other business owners to believe the U.S. economy will improve in the next 12 months.

The study did not explain why Black business owners had a higher level of optimism than other groups.


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(Photo: Commercial Appeal/Landov)