Inflation is starting to have an impact on the activity of SMEs

This is what emerges from a survey published by the Confederation of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises. Producing is also becoming more and more expensive.

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If the consumer sees the price of the supermarket trolley soar, the producers also record an increase in manufacturing costs. For the simple and good reason that the companies’ suppliers – the upstream players – themselves increase their prices (maintenance, raw materials, etc.). According to this survey of the Confederation of Small and Medium Enterprises (CPME) carried out between mid-June and mid-July, 93% of the owners of SMEs and VSEs, very small businesses, say they are faced with this situation. The cost price is now up 10%. The “cost price” is, for the company, all the direct and indirect costs that it must pay to manufacture a product or provide a service.

For the moment, a third of the business leaders questioned (owners of VSEs and SMEs) do not pass on these increases in manufacturing costs to selling prices. On the other hand, there is a direct impact on the activity of the company. Rising manufacturing costs mean less money spent on investment and social and wage policies.

A rise in production costs which slows down investment and room for maneuver for wages is all the more problematic since SMEs have less solid backs than large companies. It is indeed a very dangerous scissors effect in the current context. The second major difficulty of the moment with which small and medium-sized enterprises are confronted is that of employment. Half of the leaders surveyed – 51% to be precise – are looking to recruit but they cannot find properly trained candidates.

Another cause of the labor shortage is the desire of employees to devote themselves to something other than their professional life. This fundamental movement is certainly one of the most striking points of this very revealing survey published by the CPME, which takes the opportunity to demand a reform of the current unemployment benefit system.

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