Local businesses express optimism about economy

The study also showed that the major concerns for area businesses for 2010 include health-care costs, the national economy and taxes. For the 14th time in 15 years, the cost of health care was the most important issue facing businesses in the region. Last year, the national economy topped the list of issues that businesses ranked in importance going into 2009, with 73.6 percent of firms citing the decrease in the stock market as having a negative effect on business. This year, 44.2 percent of firms have indicated the stock market changes as having a significant impact on their business going into 2010.

Schenectady County Chamber of Commerce President Chuck Steiner thanked SUNY Albany and Marvin and Company for the survey and talked about the major concerns for businesses in Schenectady County, including taxes, the state of the national economy and health-care costs.

"If we can lower the taxes, improve our business climate in New York state, encourage the entrepreneur to take the risk and see opportunity and, honestly, get government out of the pockets of business and allow them to do what they do best, which is expand their particular business," said Steiner.

Dean of the SUNY Albany School of Business Donald Siegel said in a release that the positive outlook in the survey is a sign that the area is ready for recovery.

"The Capital Region appears to be poised for recovery. Our bright employment outlook is likely to improve, as companies such as Global Foundries and M.W. Zander expand in the region. This will stimulate more opportunities for local entrepreneurs," said Siegel. "Our results also strongly suggest that the business climate in the Capital Region is much better than in other parts of the state and county."

The survery included work by Professor Jakov Crnkovic and graduate student Zhi Ying Lu.

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