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Survey: Confidence Slips Among Mass. Employers

BOSTON — A monthly index measuring confidence among Massachusetts employers has slipped after showing improvement for two consecutive months.

Associated Industries of Massachusetts said Tuesday that its Business Confidence Index fell nearly 3.9 points in September to stand at 51.3 on a scale of 100. That means employers, in general, are only slightly more optimistic than pessimistic about the economy.

The drop ends two months of gains after the index plummeted 8.4 points in June, the second-largest monthly loss in the index’s 21-year history.

“We really have not seen any lasting improvement in business confidence levels since the middle of 2010,” said Andre Mayer, senior vice president of communications and research at AIM. “Which is about when the major economic stimulus programs began to phase out.”

AIM attributes the uncertainty among employers to near-term economic conditions not just in Massachusetts, but across the country and the world.

“Many are feeling the effects of current weakening in the economy, with slower growth nationally and here in Massachusetts, and outright recession in key export markets,” Raymond Torto, chair of AIM’s board of economic advisers, said in a statement.

With reporting by the Associated Press and WBUR’s Newsroom 

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