Latest Business Barometer Measuring Independents’ Attitudes Toward Business Shows Increase for December 2012

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NEW YORK—The Jobson Research Optical Business Barometer (OBB), which indexes the ratings of independent ECPs’ attitudes about their business and toward the general businesses climate, showed an increase in December 2012. Independents’ attitudes were indexed at 3.7 in December 2012 as compared to 3.6 in November.

The average of overall ratings from January through December 2012 also reflected an improvement, indexed at 3.7, as compared to 3.6 and 3.5 for the same periods in 2011 and 2010, respectively. The confidence rating for the outlook among independents toward the upcoming six months of optical retail business rose to a 3.7 in December as compared to 3.6 in November. Averaged future ratings remained the same as the November 2012 index of 3.8, as compared to 3.7 in December 2011 and 3.6 in December 2010.

Independents’ December business ratings reflected a unanimous increase in ECPs’ attitudes toward business in the specific areas of exams, eyeglasses and contact lenses. As compared to November 2012, exam ratings have increased from 3.6 to 3.7, eyeglasses ratings have increased from 3.5 to 3.7 and contact lens ratings have risen from 3.4 to 3.6.

The OBB is a monthly survey of a representative sample of independent optical retailers (single locations or groups of no more than three locations) designed to gauge the trends of eyecare professionals at these locations. The survey is conducted online by Jobson Optical Research to measure attitudes of independent ECPs about the current business climate and outlook based on a scale of 1 to 5 where 1 is "very negative" and 5 is "very positive," with 3 representing "neutral."

OBB findings are further compared to the Consumer Confidence Index from the Conference Board. The latest survey findings revealed a decrease from a revised index of 71.5 in November to a 65.1 in December.

The OBB is sponsored by International Vision Expo. For a full report complete with charted progress, visit VisionMonday.com.