Archive: Data Points

Tools, Tips and Studies: Health Care Heats Up, Snail Mail Slows Down

The small business community continues its push on health care reform. The National Small Business Association has launched Health Reform Today along with new data on the small business community and its difficult relationship with affording decent health insurance. Group President Todd McCracken said the number of small business owners...

By Sharon McLoone | March 25, 2009; 10:01 AM ET | Comments (0)

Poll: Government Could Do More to Spur Entrepreneurship

The government should be doing more to encourage individuals to start businesses, according to a new poll (pdf) released by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. Pollster Douglas Schoen conducted the survey, asking a random sample of 2,000 Americans whether they prefer the government giving individuals the incentives they need to...

By Sharon McLoone | March 19, 2009; 07:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Data Show Small Firms Hiring Contractors at Lower Salaries

Small businesses are hiring, but are paying lower salaries, according to new data from payroll firm SurePayroll. The company's February data show that hiring increased by 0.3 percent over January. Year to date, hiring is up 0.6 percent. However, the data also show that most of the new hires are...

By Sharon McLoone | March 6, 2009; 08:05 AM ET | Comments (5)

Women Like the Self-Employment Lifestyle, Earnings Motivate Men

While data repeatedly show that entrepreneurs have a key role in spurring economic growth through innovation and job creation, there's still a bevy of questions around the reasons driving men and women to take the small business plunge. A new study (pdf) released from the Small Business Administration's Office of...

By Sharon McLoone | March 4, 2009; 03:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

The Small Business State of Your State

The Small Business Administration's Office of Advocacy has compiled data for each U.S. state and territory, giving an excellent snapshot of each region's small business activity. For example, California had 718,220 small businesses in 2006 and created 87.6 percent of the state's net new jobs from 2004 to 2005. (The...

By Sharon McLoone | January 27, 2009; 08:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Small Firms Suffer Downturn, but Hiring Continues

Entrepreneurs by nature are an optimistic group, but many of them seem to have misplaced their rose-colored glasses last year. Forty-three percent of the self-employed and micro business owners say this is the worst economic downturn that they have ever experienced and 25 percent say it's the first slump they've...

By Sharon McLoone | January 13, 2009; 11:10 AM ET | Comments (0)

Study: Millions of Small Business Owners Hold Toxic Mortgages

Millions of U.S. small business owners own "toxic" mortgages and are at risk of defaulting on their loans, according to the National Association for the Self-Employed. Additionally, many of these bad mortgages were targeted to small business owners who were prime and near-prime borrowers, but who are now facing unmanageable...

By Sharon McLoone | November 26, 2008; 12:06 PM ET | Comments (1)

Report: SBA Should Better Educate 8(a) Applicants

The Small Business Administration could do a better job of educating applicants about its popular 8(a) loan program, but its effectiveness has been hampered by agency downsizing and budget reductions, according to a new government report (pdf). The SBA's 8(a) program is designed to help small firms gain access to...

By Sharon McLoone | November 24, 2008; 09:20 AM ET | Comments (1)

Growth of Minority Women-Owned Firms Skyrockets

Businesses owned by women of color are growing three times faster than all U.S. firms, according to a new report from the Center for Women's Business Research. "Businesses Owned by Women of Color in the United States 2008" found that firms owned by African American, Asian and Hispanic women business...

By Sharon McLoone | November 21, 2008; 04:45 PM ET | Comments (1)

Five States Lead National Transformation to 'New Economy'

Five states -- Massachusetts, Washington, Maryland, Delaware and New Jersey -- are leading the United States' transformation into a global, entrepreneurial and knowledge- and innovation-based, or "new" economy, according to a new report (pdf) released this week from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation....

By Sharon McLoone | November 21, 2008; 10:13 AM ET | Comments (0)

The New Face of Entrepreneurship

A new report (pdf) out this morning from Babson and Baruch colleges finds that the face of the nation's new entrepreneurs is changing dramatically. The report also finds that the performance of the nation's innovators is a good barometer of the state of the nation's economy. Traditionally in the United...

By Sharon McLoone | November 18, 2008; 08:39 AM ET | Comments (1)

Immigrant Business Owners Make Big Impact on U.S. Economy

Immigrant business owners are making a significant contribution to the U.S. economy, according to a new study (pdf) from the Small Business Administration's Office of Advocacy. Immigrant business owners constitute 12 percent of the total U.S. workforce and 12.5 percent of the total population of U.S. business owners, according to...

By Sharon McLoone | November 14, 2008; 01:55 PM ET | Comments (0)

Small Firms Pessimistic About State of the Economy

Small businesses are feeling kind of gloomy, according to a trade group's index of small business optimism. The October index, compiled by the National Federation of Independent Business, fell 5.4 points to 87.5, the third lowest reading in the survey's 35-year history. "The decline in the index is a clear...

By Sharon McLoone | November 11, 2008; 02:07 PM ET | Comments (0)

Study Outlines Top Five Issues for Small Firms

The top five most pressing issues facing small business owners and entrepreneurs this year are strengthening the economy, taxes and regulation, health insurance, a quality workforce and global competition, according to a government economist. Chad Moutray, the chief economist at the Small Business Administration's Office of Advocacy, also suggests in...

By Sharon McLoone | October 20, 2008; 11:57 AM ET | Comments (1)

Growth of Minority Women-Owned Firms Outpaces All Others

The number of minority women-owned businesses grew twice as fast as the number of businesses created by male minority entrepreneurs and non-minority men and women, according to a new study released this morning by the Minority Business Development Agency. Source: Minority Business Development Agency The MBDA, a branch of the...

By Sharon McLoone | October 14, 2008; 07:00 AM ET | Comments (4)

Big Plans for a Big Halloween

So what sort of spooky Halloween costume do you have in mind for this year? A frightful mortgage banker? A creepy dollar? Whatever your plans, Halloween is predicted to be this year's bright spot in the business world. Industry trade group the National Retail Federation expects retail sales in November...

By Sharon McLoone | October 13, 2008; 02:06 PM ET | Comments (1)

Small Banks Boom While Some Local Firms Bust

While big banks are collapsing with a resounding thud on a daily basis, smaller banks say they're actually profiting from their big friends' problems. Deposits are flowing in as customers flee riskier investments, and well-qualified borrowers are lining up for loans, reported Binyamin Appelbaum in Thursday's Business section of The...

By Sharon McLoone | September 26, 2008; 02:51 PM ET | Comments (1)

Small Business Report Paints Grim Economic Picture

Even before I opened a new economic report detailing how small businesses are faring in the current downturn, I could tell its findings weren't going to be pretty. The National Small Business Association got its bleak message across through the pictures on the report cover -- a business owner holding...

By Sharon McLoone | September 22, 2008; 02:02 PM ET | Comments (1)

Study: Small Firms Save Businesses Over Their Homes

Small business owners who had been at least 90 days delinquent on paying their mortgage were more likely to pay their business obligations rather than their mortgage, according to a new report from Experian. Experian, a global firm that offers a myriad of services including credit report scores, conducted the...

By Sharon McLoone | September 8, 2008; 03:49 PM ET | Comments (0)

Small Firms See Growth as Jobless Rate Rises

While the unemployment rate soared in August and employers slashed jobs, the nation's smallest businesses continue to soldier on. ADP, a national payroll firm, released its national employment report this week showing that firms with 50 or more employees lost 53,000 jobs in August while firms with fewer than 50...

By Sharon McLoone | September 6, 2008; 09:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

More Americans Insured, But Concerns Remain

The number of Americans without health insurance coverage declined from 2006 to 2007, according to U.S. Census data released Tuesday -- an encouraging finding for the many small businesses and advocacy groups that consider the issue a top priority. The number of uninsured Americans dropped from 47 million, or 15.8...

By Sharon McLoone | August 27, 2008; 02:14 PM ET | Comments (0)

Businesswomen Split in Support of Presidential Candidates

Women entrepreneurs are just about split regarding their support for the presidential contenders with 43 percent supporting John McCain, 41 percent for Barack Obama and 17 percent undecided, according to a new poll. Thirty-six percent of the 400 women business owners polled said that the economy is a major hurdle...

By Sharon McLoone | August 22, 2008; 03:00 PM ET | Comments (0)

New Book Examines Race and Entrepreneurial Success

An entrepreneur's education, financial resources and prior work experience are key factors in their success, according to a new book, which examines race and small businesses in the United States. "Race and Entrepreneurial Success: Black-, Asian-, and White-Owned Businesses in the United States" analyzes Census Bureau data to determine why...

By Sharon McLoone | August 19, 2008; 10:08 AM ET | Comments (1)

What Is a Small Business Anyway?

Small businesses come in many sizes, from one-person, home-based businesses to firms with hundreds of employees and office space. When researchers lump together the performance statistics of a one-person business with a firm that has 500 employees on its payroll, the mixed data can really distort research results. So says...

By Sharon McLoone | August 15, 2008; 09:13 AM ET | Comments (1)

Fortune Small Business Showcases Fastest Growing Public Firms

Fortune Small Business recently released its eighth annual list of the top 100 fastest-growing small public firms across the nation. Astronics, a supplier of aeronautics lighting systems, topped the list. The East Aurora, N.Y.-based firm has 967 employees. The rankings were rounded out by Nortech Systems at No. 100. Nortech,...

By Sharon McLoone | August 11, 2008; 12:58 PM ET | Comments (0)

Small Businesses Suffer from Company Fraud

Any business is vulnerable to fraud within its ranks, but small firms are especially susceptible, according to new data from the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. The median loss suffered by organizations with fewer than 100 employees was $200,000, a figure higher than the median loss in any other category...

By Sharon McLoone | August 8, 2008; 04:50 PM ET | Comments (3)

Energy Costs Loom Large for Small Firms

Small firms are fretting about high energy costs as colder temperatures lurk just around the corner and gas prices go sky high. The National Association for the Self-Employed recently released a survey in which 95 percent of respondents said increased energy costs are affecting their work. One of the largest...

By Sharon McLoone | August 6, 2008; 11:18 AM ET | Comments (1)

Poll: Small Firms Disgruntled with Feds

Small businesses say the federal government is not doing enough to help them, according to a new poll released Monday. Sixty-three percent of the 400 participants said the federal government was "doing nothing" to help small firms while 23 percent said it's "doing little." Seventy-eight percent said the economic stimulus...

By Sharon McLoone | July 15, 2008; 11:13 AM ET | Comments (0)

SBA Ombudsman Grades Agencies On Responsiveness

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission and Homeland Security's Immigration and Customs Enforcement unit are the laggards when it comes to responsiveness to regulatory and compliance issues faced by small businesses during fiscal 2007. The Office of the National Ombudsman at the Small Business Administration released its annual report (pdf) today rating...

By Sharon McLoone | July 11, 2008; 05:41 PM ET | Comments (0)

Small Business Data Shows Mixed Bag

New economic data show a mixed bag for small business growth, but small firms continue to motor ahead in a sluggish economy. They are making more use of independent contractors as a means to avoid offering pricey benefits packages to new employees, according to new data from payroll service firm...

By Sharon McLoone | July 8, 2008; 11:03 AM ET | Comments (0)

Booming Hispanic Market Opens Business Opportunities

The rapidly growing Hispanic population will have a profound effect on the landscape of the small business community, said marketing expert Chiqui Cartagena, who also noted that Latino women now make up the fastest growing segment of entrepreneurs in the United States. Latinos accounted for about 15 percent of the...

By Sharon McLoone | June 27, 2008; 12:19 PM ET | Comments (6)

Small, Local Businesses Look to Video Ads

Small and medium-sized businesses will spend 11.6 percent of their online advertising budgets on video ads by 2012, according to new data from the Kelsey Group. The consultancy predicts that revenue from Web video ads will grow to $1.5 billion in 2012 from $10.9 million in 2007 as more local...

By Sharon McLoone | June 26, 2008; 09:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Small, Older Firms Are Biggest Economic Drivers

Businesses that are big drivers of economic growth are generally small and about 25 years old, according to a new study (pdf) that contradicts prior research that found small, very young firms were responsible for the vast majority of job replacements. The study, conducted by the Corporate Research Board for...

By Sharon McLoone | June 23, 2008; 03:39 PM ET | Comments (0)

Health Care Concerns Loom over Micro-Businesses

Improving the performance of America's health care system is one the nation's most important challenges, the chairman of the Federal Reserve said today, shortly before a micro-business advocacy group released data showing that health care's high cost continues to be a significant barrier to growth. Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke said...

By Sharon McLoone | June 16, 2008; 04:41 PM ET | Comments (0)

Number of Small Business Loans Increases

The number of small business loans under $1 million increased by 15 percent from June 2006 to June 2007, according to a report (pdf) released today. A total of 8,633 institutions made 24.5 million loans valued at $685 billion. This compares to about 21 million loans valued at $634 billion...

By Sharon McLoone | June 13, 2008; 03:49 PM ET | Comments (4)

Consumers Plan to Spend Rebate Checks on Necessities

Consumers plan to spend about 40 percent of their tax rebate checks on necessities like gas and food rather than items like electronics and apparel, according to a new survey prepared for the National Retail Federation by BIGresearch. In turn, many retailers are trying to cook up creative promotions to...

By Sharon McLoone | May 16, 2008; 11:49 AM ET | Comments (0)

Study: Energy Costs a Challenge for Some Small Firms

The Small Business Administration's Office of Advocacy released a study late last month that examined energy costs. Characterization and Analysis of Small Business Energy Costs explores whether rising energy costs are harming small business growth. The analysis found that small entities in the manufacturing and construction sectors pay higher prices...

By Sharon McLoone | May 5, 2008; 11:36 AM ET | Comments (0)

Women Entrepreneurs Spur Economic Growth

Women entrepreneurs are key contributors to economic growth in low- and middle-income countries, particularly Latin America and the Caribbean, according to a new report from the Center for Women's Leadership at Babson College. Data gathered for the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor report on women and entrepreneurs show that women who are...

By Sharon McLoone | May 2, 2008; 10:28 AM ET | Comments (0)

Educated, Older Women Flock to Entrepreneurship

The Small Business Administration's Office of Advocacy today released a study that examines why women are emerging as a fast-growing sector of new small business owners. The study, Human Capital and Women's Business Ownership, which focused on women who were self-employed and held only one job, found that self-employed women...

By Sharon McLoone | April 28, 2008; 01:36 PM ET | Comments (3)

Small Firms Remain Optimistic, but Recession Looms

Most small businesses say the nation's state of economic uncertainty and lack of health insurance and available capital are the most significant challenges they face in growing and maintaining their businesses. The National Small Business Association released a study today that covers a broad range of business owners' opinions on...

By Sharon McLoone | April 16, 2008; 10:04 AM ET | Comments (0)

Small Business - Smiling in the Face of Adversity

While joblessness is on the upswing and reports show that employers shed jobs in March, new data reveal that small firms are hiring. "It has to be tough to grow a business in this economic climate. It's like being a goldfish swimming upstream into a fire hose," said Michael Alter,...

By Sharon McLoone | April 4, 2008; 03:24 PM ET | Comments (2)

Not Making a Profit in Your Start-Up? You're Not Alone

Most start-ups don't see revenue in their first year of business and more than half show a loss during their first year, according to new data released (pdf) from the Kauffman Foundation. The group has been tracking about 5,000 businesses founded in 2004 to get a better snapshot of how...

By Sharon McLoone | March 25, 2008; 09:15 AM ET | Comments (1)

SBA Launches Inner-City Initiative

The Small Business Administration on Tuesday announced that it has chosen 11 cities to participate in an initiative designed to stimulate jobs and growth while targeting inner-city small businesses. The Emerging 200 plan will begin in: Albuquerque, N.M.; Atlanta; Baltimore; Boston; Chicago; Des Moines, Iowa; Memphis, Tenn.; Milwaukee, Wis.; New...

By Sharon McLoone | March 12, 2008; 10:20 AM ET | Comments (0)

Credit Card Interest Rates Hit Home

The Federal Reserve's dramatic rate cuts were expected to make it cheaper for consumers to use credit cards. But credit card interest rates remain high and in many cases have even climbed, reports Washington Post Staff Writer Nancy Trejos in a front-page story today. Her story also touches on several...

By Sharon McLoone | February 11, 2008; 12:05 PM ET | Comments (1)

Small Business Hiring Sees Uptick in 2007

While there is a lot of gloom and doom about the state of the nation's economy, new data released Friday by one of the nation's largest payroll providers show that there were some bright spots for small businesses in 2007. SurePayroll analyzed payroll data for more than 18,000 small firms...

By Sharon McLoone | January 6, 2008; 08:00 AM ET | Comments (0)

Study Looks at Characteristics of Self-Employed

Serving in the military, having a college degree and owning a home all are factors that increase the likelihood of self-employment, according to a new government study. Here are some highlights of "Educational Attainment and Other Characteristics of the Self-Employed" from the Small Business Administration: *An individual with military experience...

By Sharon McLoone | December 18, 2007; 10:00 AM ET | Comments (2)

Small Firms Pay More to Comply with Disability Law

New data from the Small Business Administration reinforces earlier findings that small businesses pay more than large ones when it comes to complying with disability law. Before signing a lease or buying a building to set up shop, any small firm should consider whether its new space will need alterations...

By Sharon McLoone | December 3, 2007; 03:25 PM ET | Comments (1)

Entrepreneurs Turn to Franchises

Franchises are becoming an increasingly popular way to start a business without totally flying solo. Today, there are more than 3,000 franchise brands that span 230 different types of businesses, according to a new study (pdf) from a unit of the International Franchise Association. The fast-food category still remains king,...

By Sharon McLoone | November 26, 2007; 09:15 AM ET | Comments (1)

Study: Fraud Is Increasing Concern For Small Firms

Small businesses are increasingly becoming concerned about fraud especially over the Internet, according to a new study (pdf). Eighty-four percent of small firms said they are more concerned about fraud in connection with their business finances than they were a year ago. Additionally, 74 percent of respondents said they rely...

By Sharon McLoone | November 12, 2007; 10:25 AM ET | Comments (1)

D.C. Ranks Last in Best Policies for Entrepreneurs

The District of Columbia holds the dubious distinction of coming in dead last in an index released this month ranking the most policy-friendly states for entrepreneurs. In fact, the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council's report mentions that D.C.'s rankings would have been even lower if the council had included the...

By Sharon McLoone | November 9, 2007; 10:20 AM ET | Comments (0)

Halloween: Powered by Small Business

As you dutifully dole out Halloween treats today and enjoy your neighborhood costumes, peruse some of these statistics culled from 2004 U.S. Census Bureau data. * Ninety-four percent of the 135 businesses in the nation that made chocolate and confections from cacao beans had fewer than 500 employees. Seventy-six percent...

By Sharon McLoone | October 31, 2007; 08:03 AM ET | Comments (0)

Study: Start-Ups Tend to Stay Small

Most small businesses don't grow much after their birth, says a new small business study, which also concludes that people today "probably know more about the life cycle of ants than... the life cycle of businesses." Brian Headd of the Small Business Administration's Office of Advocacy and Bruce Kirchhoff from...

By Sharon McLoone | October 24, 2007; 03:20 PM ET | Comments (0)

New Data Available on Women-Owned Firms

Women-owned firms employ nearly 13 million people and generate $1.9 trillion in sales, according to the latest data from the Center for Women's Business Research. The center released "Key Facts about Women-Owned Business - a 2007 Update" on Tuesday. The hard-copy brochure is a compilation of the center's most recent...

By Sharon McLoone | August 30, 2007; 07:30 AM ET | Comments (1)

Minorities Start Fewer Businesses, Study Says

Black and Hispanic budding entrepreneurs face greater odds in opening a business than their non-minority counterparts, according to a new small business study. "The Effect of Wealth and Race on Start-up Rates" (pdf) found that a minority has about a 55 percent lower chance of opening a business than a...

By Sharon McLoone | July 26, 2007; 10:00 AM ET | Comments (3)

Region Shows Dip in Small Business Growth

A dearth of highly skilled workers in Maryland and Virginia may be hurting the area's small business growth, according to new data from payroll provider SurePayroll. The company reported Monday that the small business economy continues to expand across the nation, with June marking the seventh straight month of growth....

By Sharon McLoone | July 10, 2007; 12:02 PM ET | Comments (2)

 

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