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Half of U.S. Small Businesses Have Unfilled Positions

A record share of U.S. small-business owners said they had vacant positions in August, and an unprecedented number boosted wages to lure workers, the National Federation of Independent Business said Thursday.

Fifty percent of firms had job openings they could not fill last month, up 1 percentage point from July and the largest share in monthly data back to 1986, according to the NFIB data. A record 41% of small-business owners said they raised compensation.

“Owners are raising compensation in an attempt to attract workers and these costs are being passed on to consumers through price hikes for goods and services, creating inflation pressures,” Bill Dunkelberg, NFIB’s chief economist, said in a statement.

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