Only six percent expect to cut jobs.
The survey was taken by the Bureau of Business Research at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Its director, Eric Thompson, says the survey found expectations strongest in Omaha and Lincoln as well as in western Nebraska.
“I think that that’s related to the results from our respondents in the agriculture sector and with prices for crops still fairly low, there’s concern about how strong sales will be in that part of the economy,” Thompson tells Nebraska Radio Network affiliate KLIN.
Thompson says though businesses seem sure of their labor force, they are less sure about sales. He describes business executives as modestly optimistic about sales growth. Just under 30% of the business executives surveyed expect sales to grow in the next six months, with about 25% expecting sales to decline.
Thompson sees an optimistic trend in recent surveys.
“For the 11th month out of the last 12, businesses were optimistic in Nebraska about growth in both sales and employment,” Thompson says. “In fact, businesses were quite optimistic in terms of adding jobs over the next six months.”
The bureau sends surveys to 500 Nebraska businesses chosen at random each month. In January, 147 surveys were returned, a response rate just shy of 30%.