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Dun & Bradstreet U.S. Economic Health Tracker

A monthly report on business-related economic trends

August 2018 Report

Dun & Bradstreet's U.S. Economic Health Tracker is a monthly, multi-dimensional review of the health of the economy. Read and download the latest report for key insight on small business, jobs, and overall business performance. Come back regularly for new updates, published the Tuesday prior to the first Friday of each month.

Perspectives

Small business health showed significant improvement this month with the bounce back of t he Small Business Health Index. The index rose an impressive 3.3 points, but it wil l need a few more months of gains to build upwar d momentum and break past the high 80’s; small business headwinds will likely take time to dissipate in the near term. Meanwhile, balance sheet health, as measured by our Overall Business Health Index showed deterioration as the index fell sharply in June, whipping out al l the index’s YTD gains.

Overall, this month’s Tracker shows mixed signals. On t he one hand small businesses seem to have gained some footing this month, reversing prior declines and climbing to a nine-month high. On the other hand, a strong drop in overall business health may be showing t hat businesses are possibly starting to feel the negative impact of a tightening monetary policy and the implementation of tariff barriers on US goods among key trad ing partners.

Methodology

The Small Business Health Index measures year-over-year small business performance through payment patterns and credit use. U.S. Jobs Health combines Small Business Health Index industry data with BLS figures to forecast monthly nonfarm payroll employment. The U.S. Overall Business Health Index provides a weighted average of Dun & Bradstreet’s Viability Score, Delinquency Predictor and Total Loss Predictor. The index ranges from zero (with all businesses recording high levels of risk) to 100% (with all businesses recording low levels of risk). Report based on data available as of July 27, 2018.

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