Monday, January 25, 2010
SMB News Round Up: Failed Emergency Small Business Boost and How to Avoid a Tax Time “Train Wreck”
Every so often, I like to compile some of the latest news headlines in the small business sector. As always, there is no shortage of news to cover – since the SMB sector is the backbone of our economic recovery. This news round up post includes a number of stories regarding the America’s Recovery Act (ARC), as well as tips of how to avoid any tax time “train wrecks.”
An Emergency Small Business Boost That Fizzled
A stimulus measure crafted to get emergency funding to Main Street businesses has turned out to be such a flop that even its Congressional advocate wants the program killed. But for the 5,000 business owners who have jumped through all the hoops to land loans, even a flawed lifeline is better than none at all. The "America's Recovery Capital" (ARC) loan program was created as part of February's $787 billion Recovery Act. From the very beginning, the program struggled. Congress ordered the Small Business Administration to release guidelines for the loans within 15 days. Instead, it took four months. Read the full CNN Money article here.
Unsecured Small Business Loans—Will They Help Businesses And Unemployment?
Small businesses obviously need capital to run and maintain a certain standard of operation, and in the past unsecured small business loans have been a source of that capital. Also, small businesses are needed to combat unemployment and make more jobs available for those who are seeking work. The problem seems to be that if a small business is doing well, even in the face of a tough economy, just getting by or making a decent profit isn’t going to be enough for them to grow and expand their workforce. Bringing in enough money to pay expenses, employees, and maybe put a little away isn’t going to go to far in helping a small business create more jobs. That is where unsecured small business loans come into play. Read the full Red, White and Blue Press blog post here.
Small Firms Should 'Increase Their Website Presence’
As someone who has been advising small businesses for more than 25 years, there has never been a better, yet more challenging, time to start or run a small firm. The contradiction in that statement is deliberate. Better, because never has the playing field been so level - and challenging, because of the current economic malaise. Running a small business requires a skill set of extraordinary proportions, and it really is a miracle that so many survive, yet alone prosper. Read the full BBC article here.
Small Businesses Can Avoid a Tax Time Train Wreck
For some small-business owners, income tax filing season feels like a slow-motion train wreck. These are often owners who tend to be disorganized and unable to keep good records. Instead of keeping their companies' books with a small-business accounting program, they use a stack of overstuffed file folders or worse, boxes and shopping bags. They often end up spending hundreds of extra dollars paying their accountants to sort through the whole mess -- provided the accountants will even agree to deal with it. Read the full Salt Lake City Tribune article here.