Citizens releases Business Conditions Index for Q2

Report shows slowdown in small business formation, but rise in unemployment

Citizens’ Business Conditions Index highlights the latest data that shows that New Hampshire businesses are faring well against inflation and other economic struggles.

The report indicates a rise in unemployment insurance claims and a slowdown in small business formation, which caused the index to dip to 50.89 in the second quarter.

“While the labor market has started to show some softening in the face of aggressive Federal Reserve rate hikes and the manufacturing sector slowed given high inventory levels and a shift in consumption towards services, Citizens’ proprietary data on revenue continued to be strong across most industries during the second quarter,” Citizens reported in a press release.

“The overall U.S. economy has begun to slow in the second quarter even though Citizens’ middle market and mid-corporate clients continue to fare very well,” said Eric Merlis, managing director and co-head of global markets at Citizens. “The Fed’s tough medicine seems to be working, and the rate of inflation is falling, with the labor market beginning to show some weakness and new business formation stalling.”

Speaking with NH Business Review on a recent episode of the Down to Business podcast, NH and VT president Joe Carelli said, “Inventories have been rebuilt since the pandemic, so a lot of companies have started to slow down their inventory builds. But also, inventories are becoming increasingly more expensive considering interest rate hikes. So, it makes sense that we’re starting to see a little bit of softness in the index.”

He continues, “When I look back over history with New Hampshire over the last recessions or downward cycles, historically, New Hampshire typically comes out quicker than the (rest) of the country. I’m still cautiously optimistic that when the conditions increase, New Hampshire will see its fair share of rebound in those areas.”

To view the full report, visit

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