The Canadian Federation of Independent Business released their Barometer for April, looking at small business optimism.

Kathleen Cook, Director Provincial Affairs for the Prairies, says things are mostly positive, and CFIB is reporting that many small business owners are confident looking into 2022.

"They were up for Manitoba. The 12 month (confidence index) was 61.5 and the three month rose to 60.2," says Cook. "The number of businesses that were reporting they were in good shape, nationally, was 38 (per cent). Manitoba was 43. (Businsesses) in poor shape, nationally, was 17 (per cent) and in Manitoba, it was 19."

The 12-month confidence index rose from 56.3 in March while the 3-month confidence index rose from 52.8. Looking at national numbers, there has been some volatility due to each province having different restrictions for the pandemic. With restrictions lifted, and the country figuring out what the "new normal" will be, CFIB is predicting more stability when comparing numbers nation-wide. 

While things are looking better, CFIB still notes there are still significant concerns for small businesses.

"Rising costs, that's the number one concern of small business owners right now," says Cook. "Inflation, high input costs, high fuel and energy costs, wage costs going up, insurance going up, and then also labour shortages are an ongoing concern, particularly in transportation and hospitality, and then supply chain challenges."

You can read more on the CFIB's website here.