Roughly half – 43 percent – of small business owners, with sales between $100,000 and $10 million, do not plan to retire. A new Economic Pulse Survey for the third quarter of 2012, by Barlow Research, also found that among people who said they would retire, the average is now 67 years old.

Of small business owners who said they intend to retire, 72 percent plan to still work part-time after they retire.

"Small business confidence has once again declined, but the negative effects have yet to reach the banking industry. If confidence remains negative, we need to be prepared for a further decline in loan demand. Business owners may not retire, but they will continue to retreat from risk," said Bernie Kuechler, project director for Barlow Research.

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