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The Self-Employed Perspective on Energy & Gas Prices

The Self-Employed Perspective on Energy & Gas Prices

May 2012



The unstable and often increasing energy and gasoline costs are a constant concern for most Americans.  A recent survey of its members by the National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE) revealed that over half of the self-employed and micro-business owners surveyed indicated that their business was negatively impacted by unstable energy prices.

“It’s evident that the unstable energy market strains the nation’s micro-business owners and the self-employed,” says Kristie L. Arslan, NASE President.  “The clearest sign of the effect of the unstable energy market is that only 14 percent of respondents claimed they were not impacted by a rise in energy costs.  With 86 percent of those surveyed reporting they were impacted and needed to make changes to the way they do business, it is easy to see why frustration levels are high.”

Notable findings include:

  • 42% of self-employed and micro-business respondents spent over $250 on gasoline for their vehicle within the past month.
  • 54% indicated that the volatility in energy and gasoline prices moderately or significantly hurt their business.
  • 37% stated that in a direct response to the unstable or increasing energy and gasoline prices, they had to reduce their workforce (full-time and part-time).

The full survey can be found here.

The following responses are from micro-business owners regarding how unstable and/or increasing energy and gas costs affected them, their family and their business:

  • It has significantly increased the cost of my supplies.
  • The economy is so unstable that people are afraid to do anything.  You cannot plan in this environment.
  • I am unable to hire another employee due to the uncertainty of what new policies and bigger government overreach the current administration in D.C. will do to us.
  • Rising fuel costs have curbed my ability to drive to the most commonly visited areas for my business.
  • We have lost lots of business due to the cost of gas as well as not doing any out of town work anymore.


The survey was available for NASE Members to take in May.  Over 550 small-business owners opted-in to the online survey and respondents were prohibited from taking it more than once.

About the NASE

The National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE) is the nation’s leading resource for the self-employed and micro-businesses, bringing a broad range of benefits to help entrepreneurs succeed and to drive the continued growth of this vital segment of the American economy.  The NASE is a 501(c) (6) non-profit organization and provides big-business advantages to hundreds of thousands of micro-businesses across the United States.  For more information, visit the association’s web site at

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