Smallest U.S. firms lost revenue last year, Fed survey finds

The smallest U.S. businesses—those with no employees other than the owner—struggled during the past year with 76% of the firms suffering a decline in revenue over 12 months, a new survey by regional Federal Reserve banks found.

Just 13% reported revenue growth in the survey, which was led by Cleveland Fed researchers and published on Monday. The result showed that the smallest firms suffered more than large firms during the Covid-19 pandemic, the Fed research found.

Among the nonemployers, 32% characterized their financial condition as “poor” at the time of the survey, and 81% of nonemployer firms experienced some type of financial challenge in the 12 months prior

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