Business confidence in Massachusetts rose slightly in the final month of 2011, according to an index maintained by the Associated Industries of Massachusetts, or AIM, a group that represents Bay State employers.
AIM’s monthly business confidence index for Massachusetts posted a December reading of 51 on a 100-point scale, a nine-tenths of a point increase from the November reading.
Every month since mid 1991, AIM surveys its member companies to determine the state’s business confidence. A reading above 50 indicates that the Massachusetts employer community is predominantly optimistic while a reading below 50 indicates a negative outlook. The index reached historic highs of 68.5 on two occasions, once in 1997, the other in 1998. Its all-time low of 33.3 was posted in February 2009.
In a statement, Fred Breimyer, a member of AIM’s Board of Economic Advisors, said: “The index is down a bit from last December’s 52.4, after a year of disappointing economic growth and of political and financial turmoil. On the positive side, it has edged back up above 50, neutral on our scale, and Massachusetts employers expect to see modest improvement in conditions over the first half of 2012.”