Daily News: July 13, 2012

NSBA Survey: Small Business Financing an Ongoing Problem

According to a new survey from the National Small Business Association (NSBA), the 2012 Small Business Access to Capital Survey, cash flow issues continue to plague a significant number of America’s small businesses. Among the findings: nearly half (43%) of small-business owners report that they needed funds at one point in the last four years and were unable to find any willing sources.

“Not only have small-business owners been unable to find new credit over the last four years, nearly a third had their existing credit slashed and one in ten had their loans called in early,” stated NSBA president and CEO Todd McCracken. “What’s worse – 19% of those whose loans were called in early were given less than 15 days to pay the full balance of their loans.”

Among the small-business owners that reported some change to their credit, 60% stated that the reason given was the bank’s internal risk assessment. Underscoring the relatively negative impression many survey respondents expressed with lending institutions, 15% said they were given no explanation for changes to their credit.

Small businesses were asked to rate various lending institutions and only small community banks and credit unions received a majority overall positive rating. More than one quarter of small-business respondents said they changed banking institutions in the last four years, with feelings of mistreatment the most common cause.

In addition to traditional financing issues, respondents reported a notable increase in client payment times, and 55% of small subcontractors reported late payments from a prime contractor. On a positive note, 19% stated they are more likely to seek investors as a result of the crowd funding exception included in the recently passed JOBS Act.

“While small businesses’ ability to garner financing has broad economic implications, nearly one third use personal property-such as their home-to secure financing,” stated NSBA Chair Chris Holman, CEO of Michigan Business Network.com and president of The Greater Lansing Business Monthly. “The financing issues small-business owners face don’t end when they close up shop for the day.”

To read the full survey results, click here.