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Survey: Small biz optimism took a dive in November

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NEW YORK (AP) -- Small business owners grew more pessimistic in November after the presidential election and Superstorm Sandy.

That's the finding of a survey by the National Federation of Independent Business. The lobbying group says Tuesday that its small-business optimism index dropped 5.6 points last month to 87.5.

NFIB Chief Economist William Dunkelberg says the biggest drag on the index was owners' expectation that business conditions will be worse six months from now. The number of owners expecting better times ahead fell 37 points. Nearly half the owners surveyed are pessimistic about the future.

Dunkelberg says readings in the states hit by Sandy were more pessimistic than in the rest of the country. A greater number of owners in those states say they planned to cut their payrolls.

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