Warsaw, 16th August 2021
Busometr Index: Investments still at historical lows, the labour market in good shape
“Busometr” – the index of economic mood – amounted to 46.5 points for the 2nd half of 2021 (up from 42.2 points in the previous half-year), which means that the entrepreneurs’ sentiment is clearly improving. Investments are still in the worst shape, while on the labour market good prospects remain.
In our last survey, we recorded the best sentiment among entrepreneurs in two years. Importantly, however, the previous two studies took place during the extraordinary economic situation sparked by the global COVID-19 epidemic. Numerous sanitary restrictions accompanying the pandemic forced a large number of enterprises to shut down, mostly in food services, tourism and event management.
“When most sanitary restrictions were waived, economic normalcy returned,” claims Cezary Kaźmierczak, President of the Union of Entrepreneurs and Employers. “Most industries and sectors now have the opportunity to recover from the prolonged lockdown. We expect a further improvement in economic mood, as long as the epidemic does not get out of hand once again.”
The analysis of the individual components of the “Busometr” index suggests that entrepreneurs’ moods vary depending on which specific part of the economic reality they are asked about.
As many as 35% of all people surveyed believe that the economic situation will worsen in the coming months. A slightly smaller group – 34% of entrepreneurs – believe that the economic situation will not change. However, there is no shortage of optimists, as 31% of respondents trust that the economic situation will improve.
The post-pandemic economic rebound is clear under the “Labour Market” component. Entrepreneurs need more workforce, which is visible in the results of the survey. As many as 16% of companies plan to increase employment, while the reduction of jobs is forecast by only 6% of enterprises. It is also important for employers to retain current employees, which is why 17% of companies plan to raise wages, while only 5% of respondents anticipate a reduction in salaries.
The reading of the “Investments” component still raises big concerns. The index increased slightly to 29.9 points, compared to 29.2 points in the previous six months. As many as 65% of enterprises declare that they do not plan to implement any investments in the foreseeable future.
“The root cause of the reluctance to invest, noted in earlier readings, was the uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the main cause of concern among entrepreneurs remains the regulatory uncertainty, additionally exacerbated by the directions of changes proposed in the Polish Deal,” stresses Jakub Bińkowski, Management Board Member and Director of the Law and Legislation Department of the Union of Entrepreneurs and Employers. “Companies are afraid of increased fiscal burdens and growing operating costs, therefore they give up new investment projects.”
Busometr ZPP – the Index of Economic Mood in the SME Sector is an economic index showcasing the level of optimism in small and medium enterprises, and their plans for the next six months.
Three components affect the index: (1) the economic situation, (2) labour market (remunerations and employment) and (3) investments.
A value within the range of 0-100 is assigned to each component.
The Union of Entrepreneurs and Employers along with Maison&Partners conduct the research among a representative group of small and medium enterprises (up to 250 employees). Busometr ZPP is published every six months. The sample size is N = 600 respondents from the SME sector.
The survey is carried out since 2011.