Americans Trust Small Business Over Corporations and Government, Survey Finds

Americans currently have a more favorable view of businesses, in particular small businesses, than they do of government.

According to a recent survey, 67% of Americans have a positive view of major companies, compared to 41% have a positive view of the federal government. When it comes to small business the view is even more favorable, with 88% of respondents feeling positive.

The survey was commissioned by the Public Affairs Council and conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International with 1,750 adults via phone.

Respondents also said small business will be most important to the economic well-being of the middle class in America over the next 50 years, with 49% of the vote, compared to just 19% saying the same about major companies. Government was selected by 18% of respondents, and labor unions were most important to 11%.

The survey also counters the popular notion that younger generations are more anti-business than their parents. Generation X, those ages 36 to 47, had a 71% favorable response to business, and 68% of Millenials, age 18 to 35, shared that view. This compares to 87% of boomers, ages 48 to 66, and 64% of older Americans having favorable views toward business, the survey found.

Many do not believe big companies in particular can be trusted. Seventy-six percent of respondents said that too much power is concentrated in the hands of too few large companies, and 63% said major companies “make too much profit.” In addition, 44% said they have little or no trust in companies to “do the right thing.”