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Business Confidence

Business confidence in Halifax has declined slightly since the Partnership’s spring 2011 confidence survey. The Business Confidence Index (a measure of past, present, and future confidence, as well as the business climate ranging from 100 to -100) dropped from 25.6 to 24.5. 

Looking at some of the age and geographic splits, confidence among newer businesses - whose confidence was significantly above the average in spring 2012 - has lost some of its steam and is now just a little above average. Older businesses have remained below the average, although their optimism has increased slightly. Regardless of the age of a business, there is moderate optimism. 

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Geographically, Halifax and Dartmouth businesses had a significant confidence gap from businesses in the rest of the municipality, however this gap has shrunk. Halifax and Dartmouth businesses saw their confidence dip slightly, while businesses in the rest of HRM saw theirs increase slightly. Again, all areas saw moderate amounts of optimism. 

Looking at what has moved the Business Confidence Index, nearly 9/10 businesses are optimistic about their current economic prospects in Halifax – most moderately. There has been virtually no change in this over time, indicating that most businesses see growth prospects. Of concern is the perception of Halifax as a place to do business – 3/5 businesses believe Halifax is an “average” place to do business, while 1/5 believe it is above average and 1/5 believe it is below average.  

While global economic conditions affect confidence, our local business climate is well within our control. Creating productive, efficient and client-friendly processes that help entrepreneurs and established companies do business faster and cheaper would help make Halifax a better place to do business and encourage more people to take risks, expand and grow. 

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