San Diego Business Journal

Business Owners Remain Optimistic About Local Economy

By Sarah de Crescenzo Friday, June 16, 2017
   

San Diego’s business community was as optimistic about the economy going forward in May as it was in the prior month, according to the latest report from the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce, which fields input on a monthly basis from about 200 randomly selected members of San Diego-area chambers of commerce.

The report - now sponsored by San Diego Private Bank - revealed an unchanged index of 23.7, the same as in April. The range of the index is -100 to 100; zero is considered a neutral outlook.

Based on the input the chamber had received from business people in San Diego, 2017 has been a good year when it comes to economic expectations.

“It has been a pleasantly remarkable change from 2016, when San Diego's business community began to doubt that things would improve and see-sawed its way through the year,” the chamber said.

The only type of business that did not report a similar surge in optimism this year was firms where the only employee is the owner.

The report also detected geographic differences in levels of optimism: the index for coastal companies fell to 4 in May from 50 the previous month, while the North County area’s index was reported at 30.

The biggest challenge facing the business people who responded remains government regulations, according to the report. A total of 19 percent of respondents identified that as their top concern. Other concerns unrelated to government oversight included competition (5 percent), staffing (5 percent) and issues specific to the business (4 percent).

The survey that was created to gather data for the report also asked businesses how vulnerable they feel to cyber attacks.

When the chamber last included the topic in a survey in March of 2015, 35 percent of respondents were concerned a firm in their industry would come under cyber attack in the next three years. The survey last month found 48 percent now consider fielding a serious cyber attack a likely occurrence.