Archive: Economy Watch

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)

White House Offers Details of Plan to Foster Small Business Growth

Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner today announced details to some of the promises made in the government's Financial Stability Plan outlined last month, including ways to spur banks to lend, eliminating loan fees and creating new bank-lending reporting requirements. The Obama administration believes that the nation's "economic recovery will be driven...

By Sharon McLoone | March 16, 2009; 12:05 PM ET | Comments (16)

Landrieu: Small Business to Benefit from Economic Plan

Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.), the head of the Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee, said today that the proposed economic recovery plan currently in debate on the Hill moves small business in the right direction. Language in the bill temporarily eliminates fees associated with the Small Business Administration's main lending...

By Sharon McLoone | February 6, 2009; 03:35 PM ET | Comments (3)

House Hearing: Small Businesses on Economic Recovery

There's no shortage of ideas on how to generate more jobs to help boost the nation out of its economic doldrums, but many members of the small business community are waiting to follow the lead of the new administration before making any expensive or big-impact decisions. "Main Street can not...

By Sharon McLoone | January 14, 2009; 05:40 PM 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)

New TARP Bill to Aid Small Financial Institutions

The chairman of the House Financial Services Committee has introduced a bill (pdf) reforming the program designed to shore-up the nation's ailing financial structure. It will require the Treasury to permit smaller community financial institutions to participate on the same terms as the large players that already have received funds....

By Sharon McLoone | January 9, 2009; 03:00 PM ET | Comments (1)

Business Group Offers 'Wish List' to Lawmakers

A small business advocacy group is asking lawmakers to include certain provisions in the much-talked about upcoming economic stimulus bill. The National Small Business Association said the number of small business owners who believe the national economy is worse than it was five years ago jumped to 64 percent from...

By Sharon McLoone | January 8, 2009; 07:30 AM ET | Comments (0)

Group Urges Policy Makers to Focus on Small Firms

The National Small Business Association today kicked off an initiative designed to grab the interest of the next Congress and presidential administration when it comes to small firms. The association's "Think Big. Start Small" campaign aims to focus lawmakers on "one undisputed fact: small business has been, and must continue...

By Sharon McLoone | December 10, 2008; 01:04 PM ET | Comments (0)

Small Business Players Struggle in Recession

Ryan Fochler, a successful small business owner in Arlington, had his line of credit killed by two major credit card firms overnight. "I was sick to my stomach," he said. Fochler has been unable to expand his pet-care business while he looks for a bank loan. He's not alone. Small...

By Sharon McLoone | December 9, 2008; 07:19 AM ET | Comments (0)

Sen. Snowe Pushes for Cabinet-Level Status for SBA

The top Republican on the Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee sent a letter Monday to President-elect Barack Obama urging him to elevate the Small Business Administration to Cabinet-level status. "During these challenging economic times, it is imperative that the SBA, the federal agency supporting the single-largest creator of jobs...

By Sharon McLoone | December 8, 2008; 05:04 PM ET | Comments (0)

Intuit Exec Sees Savvy Small Firms into Social Marketing

Rick Jensen, senior vice president and general manager of Intuit's Small Business Group, is a regular guy who has regular problems just like anybody else. I interviewed him fresh off the slippery task of mopping up his garage, which had flooded due to a faulty kitchen garbage disposal. Rick Jensen,...

By Sharon McLoone | December 2, 2008; 12:30 PM ET | Comments (2)

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)

Falling Gas Prices a Silver Lining For Small Businesses

A silver lining of the economic crisis is the rapidly falling cost of gas, Alejandro Lazo reports in Relief by the Gallon. After rising to record highs this past summer, gas prices have now fallen to a national average of $1.885 per gallon for regular unleaded, their lowest level since...

By Sharon McLoone | November 26, 2008; 07:31 AM ET | Comments (0)

New Lending Program Evokes 'Cautious Optimism' in Small Biz Community

The chairwoman of the House Small Business Committee is cautiously optimistic about the move by the Federal Reserve today to provide up to $200 billion to investors who put the money toward small business and consumer lending. "There is cautious optimism that the new facility, which is long-overdue, will begin...

By Sharon McLoone | November 25, 2008; 12:07 PM ET | Comments (0)

SBA Urges Banks to Offer Greater Loan Flexibility to Small Firms

The Small Business Administration today urged banks to offer more flexibility to small firms interested in a special long-term loan program as entrepreneurs and established small business owners find it difficult to succeed as sources of credit like home equity loans diminish. As traditional bank lending tightens in the nation's...

By Sharon McLoone | October 20, 2008; 01:01 PM ET | Comments (0)

Obama Proposes Small Business Rescue Plan

Barack Obama today proposed a plan of tax cuts and loans for small businesses hurt by the current credit crisis, a temporary program he said is needed to help Main Street and complement what has already been done for Wall Street. In The Trail, a daily diary of campaign 2008...

By Sharon McLoone | October 10, 2008; 02:56 PM ET | Comments (24)

Small Firms Push for Better Bailout Bill

Many in the small business community are livid that Wall Street has put the nation's economy at risk and are urging Congress to get back to work after the House failed to pass a $700 billion financial bailout package Monday. "The House action today is disappointing -- clearly there is...

By Sharon McLoone | September 30, 2008; 07:15 AM ET | Comments (8)

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)

Small Firms Express Economic Confidence in McCain

Small businesses believe Republican presidential nominee John McCain is better prepared to manage the economy than Democratic rival Barack Obama, according to an informal poll released today from Register.com. Fifty-four percent of respondents bank on Sen. McCain (R-Ariz.) when it comes to the economy while 36 percent said the same...

By Sharon McLoone | September 16, 2008; 07:00 AM 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)

 

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