According to new employment data released last week by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the leisure and hospitality industry boosted economy-wide employment gains by adding 74,000 jobs in the month of September. Specifically, food service and drinking places gained 29,000 new staff, helping to drop the sector unemployment rate by 1.4 points to 7.7 percent. Notwithstanding, other reports from the BLS indicate that with more than 890,000 hospitality workers quitting their jobs in August, the industry quit rate of 6.8 percent is more than twice the national average for that month of 2.9 percent continuing to exacerbate the ongoing labor shortage. Against that backdrop, is it any wonder that according to the National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB), small business optimism dropped another point in September to 99.1, while the NFIB Uncertainty Report increased to 74 points. Further, the NFIB monthly jobs report for September indicated that 51 percent of small business members reported job openings with labor quality continues as the top problem facing small business owners.