Latest data released by NFIB - 7 April 2020

That is a record monthly decline in the headline reading as we see sentiment among small businesses in the US tumble to its lowest level since October 2016.

The 8.1 points drop is the biggest drop in the monthly surveys, going back to 1986 as the measure of business conditions six months from now sees its largest drop since November 2012 as well, with sales expectations also seeing its largest ever decline.

According to NFIB:

"Small businesses are living through the coronavirus pandemic right now and it's hard to say what the severity of the disruption will be, but we do know they're feeling the urgency."

A thing that stands out in the report is that small businesses are reporting that they are having difficulties in submitting applications for loans being provided through the federal stimulus program. That to me is a very pessimistic signal about the situation on the ground.