SALT LAKE CITY — The Zions Bank Small Business Index for Utah was 115.8 in January 2012, up from a revised 111.2 in December 2011. Using 100.0 for calendar year 1997 as its baseline, the index measures business conditions from the viewpoint of the Utah small business owner or manager. A higher index number is associated with more favorable business conditions for Utah’s small businesses.

The state’s unemployment rate was estimated at 6.0 percent in the latest month, down 0.4 percent from the prior month. Total Utah employment grew by an estimated 36,300 jobs during the past 12 months.

Modest U.S. economic growth has added little to the performance of Utah’s small business sector, said Zions Bank economic consultant Jeff Thredgold. Such limited growth is expected to continue, despite massive fiscal and monetary stimulus, he said.

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