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Researcher Mark Mcrindle. Researcher Mark Mcrindle. Featured
26 May 2016 Posted by 


Business bouyed by light rail

LAST October, the first Hills Performance Sentiment Index showed that businesses were gloomy about  the future and were bogged down in red tape.

What a difference six months makes. 

Business confidence in the Hills has grown in the past six months, according to the latest performance sentiment survey conducted by leading social researcher Mark McCrindle.

More than half of the 164 businesses surveyed reported an increase in sales revenue.

Commissioned by Hills Business Chamber, McCrindle’s second Hills Shire Performance Sentiment Index, released in late May,  showed that overall optimism in the business community had shifted from a negative score of -12 in the October PSI to 11, a marked increase in confidence.

Interestingly, confidence was highest among non-employing and medium sized businesses than among micro and small businesses, which are suffering more in current conditions.

Longer-term businesses - those who had been operating for 10 years or more - reported better economic conditions that those that had been operating for less than 10 years. But the reverse was true when it came to frustration over road infrastructure.

Chamber chairman Anthony Moss said the Metro North West and planned development around stations helped the lift in confidence.

Hills Mayor Michelle Byrne said the council was spending tens of millions of dollars on upgrading roads and had succeeded in getting state funding for widening of Showground Rd.

Red tape as in regulatory requirements also was of less concern to businesses than six months ago.

Businesses noted that staff costs had increased, largely because staffing numbers and hours had grown, an indication of overall growth.

The report showed that capital investments and expenses had increased, as had revenue from exports.

While six months ago 58 per cent of business owners believed their costs would increase, in the latest PSI, only 45 per cent said that had happened.

Clr Byrne said she hoped that confidence would improve with each PSI.

“The Hills is on the receiving end of unprecedented levels on investment and the opportunities for businesses to prosper have never been greater,” she said in the report’s introduction.

Speaking to Access after the release of the report, Mr McCrindle said it was clear that increased infrastructure spending by the state government and council, reduced interest rates and increased investment in the Hills were key factors in the confidence boost.


● 36 pc have employed more people.
● 32 pc have expanded offices.
● Earnings have increased.
● 40 pc believe economy will improve.
● Under 50s more confident.
● Slow internet hindering businesses.



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Western Sydney Business Access (WSBA) covers the business and community issues of the Greater Western Sydney region of Australia. WSBA is the popular media source for connecting with the pulse of the region and tapping into it's vast opportunities and networks.