It can seem like the low-hanging fruit of political topics, but there's new evidence coming out that small and medium-sized businesses are feeling the crunch from government regulations. And with online commerce profit margins shrinking, does push finally need to come to shove?
Those are the questions being raised by the National Retail Federation's newest study, which looked at the impact that government regulations are having on everyday and high-level operations. The findings weren't great - 81 percent of small business owners said that "regulations weaken the appeal of owning a business, and 69 percent admitted that they had become "overwhelmed by regulations, rules and mandates."
“Overregulation is undermining the resolve of small retailers,” Matthew Shay, president and CEO of the NRF, said in a statement. “To fulfill their role in driving the American economy, small businesses need the freedom to make the decisions that make sense for them instead of being burdened by one-size-fits all mandates.”
Shay's last point was borne out by the data. Only 44 percent of survey respondents said that the regulations that apply to them actually achieve what they're intended to. While perspective matters a great deal, there is the chance that improving this metric could ease the burden of some necessary (or unnecessary) regulations.
The NRF study also touched on several current issues swirling around the role of government in the workplace, like minimum wage. About 37 percent of retailers argued that a $15 minimum wage would threaten the stability of business, and a proposed reformation of overtime laws would "result in negative consequences," according to 44 percent of retailers. Lastly, 60 percent said that changes to on-call hiring policies would strip them of much-needed flexibility.