If it was up to Australia’s small businesses, the Coalition would retain government if an election was held this month, according to the MYOB Australian Small Business Survey.
Forty five per cent of small businesses surveyed believed that John Howard would make a better Prime Minister than Kevin Rudd (at 33%), a slight increase in support for the current PM than last quarter (which showed 42% support for Howard and 35% for Rudd).
According to the survey, Peter Costello is well ahead as the preferred Treasurer, with nearly half (48%) of small businesses surveyed believing Peter Costello is the better candidate for the job, while only 17% supported Wayne Swan for the role of Treasurer.
Tim Reed, Managing Director of MYOB Australia said, "small businesses are continuing to support the Federal Government, and remain positive about their own performance prospects with 77% of businesses believing they will perform well over the coming year."
"The support for the Federal Government remains strong despite interest rates remaining small businesses’ number one concern, and some concerns also about the Federal Government’s contribution to the development of small business."
"The jury is out on the effect of the recent interest rate rise, but there is concern about the effect on consumer spending and the impact on small businesses,’ said Tim.
The latest Federal Budget also hit a positive note, with over one-fifth of small businesses perceiving that the Budget initiatives are likely to have a positive influence on their business.
Of all budget initiatives, ‘personal income tax reductions’ were rated most positively, with over 61% of small businesses surveyed believing it would have a positive impact on their business performance.
"When the new budget was announced in May this year, we were encouraged by the initiatives the Government released to help small business. However we remain cautious about interest rates and spending initiatives that may fuel an already heated economy,’ said Tim.