2015 PCA Index Q4 Study Indicates Small Business Owners Are Optimistic

By |2017-09-14T11:21:07-07:00January 21st, 2016|

Once a quarter, Pepperdine University’s Graziadio School of Business and Management and Dun & Bradstreet poll small and medium-sized businesses across the nation to learn more about those companies growth and access to capital. Overall, the Q4 2015 PCA Index findings revealed that although small businesses are optimistic, bank loan approvals remain low and personal asset use is still prevalent. Here are the highlights*:

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  • the bank loan success rate for business with less than $5 million in revenue at less than half since 2012
  • BUT there was an increase in bank loans from Q3 to Q4
  • business owners surveyed with less than $5 million in revenue, 56% say their growth opportunities are restricted, and 49% feel their ability to hire is restricted as well
  • businesses sought capital from alternative sources and relied on different types of personal assets, including: business credit cards – 58%, personal credit cards – 47%, and personal loans – 43%

Full National Infographic

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  • New York small businesses surveyed are feeling less restricted than other businesses across the country: 48% of New York small businesses
    feel their growth opportunities are restricted, compared to 53% nationally, and 43% feel their ability to hire is restricted, compared to 46% nationally
  • compared to other businesses surveyed nationwide, New York small businesses also have a greater need for financing and have been receiving loans at a higher rate than the national average (43% compared to 39%), which is 24% better than three months ago

Full New York Infographic

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  • California small businesses surveyed are feeling more restricted than the rest of the nation: 60% report feeling their growth opportunities are
    restricted and 51% report feeling their ability to hire is restricted, compared to the national average of 53% and 46% respectively
  • despite these restrictions, 32% of California small businesses are planning to raise financing in the next six months and 61% report needing financing due to planned growth

Full California Infographic

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  • Florida small businesses appear to be suffering compared to the rest of the nation: Only 9% of those who applied for a bank loan in Q4 2015 received
    one, compared to 39% nationally
  • however, in the next six months, 69% of Florida small businesses surveyed are planning to hire, and 39% are planning to raise financing. Both of these numbers are above the national averages, 62% and 31% respectively

Full Florida Infographic

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  • 64% of Texas small businesses surveyed are planning to hire in the next six months, and 58% are in need of financing due to planned growth, but only 32% of
    businesses surveyed who applied for a loan received one, 16% less than in Q3
  • Texas small business owners have been relying heavily on alternative sources, such as business and personal credit cards and personal loans:
    • Business Credit Cards – 66% (8% more than Nation)
    • Personal Credit Cards – 48% (1% more than Nation)
    • Personal Loans – 48% (5% more than Nation)

Full Texas Infographic

For more details, click the images below for the national and each state’s full infographic. To read the entire study, you can find the results report here and the trends report here.


*Pepperdine Private Capital Index: PCA Index Survey Responses. Fourth Quarter 2015. Survey results based on 2,773 national responses. ©Dun & Bradstreet, Inc. 2015. All rights reserved.

Featured Photo Credit: Steven Depolo, Flickr