Categories: Small Business Policy

Growing Home Care Industry May Have to Raise Pay

Posted by: John Tozzi on February 28

The fastest growing jobs are also the least glamorous. The United States will add 1.3 million health and personal care aides by 2020, according to Labor Dept. projections released this...

Why Corporate Tax Cuts Won't Help Small Business

Posted by: John Tozzi on February 22

President Obama today proposed eliminating corporate tax loopholes and using the money to cut the business tax rate to 28 percent from 35 percent. The tax code "is unnecessarily complicated...

Making U.S. Visa Programs Work for Tech Entrepreneurs

Posted by: John Tozzi on February 22

Entrepreneurs, tech executives, and venture capitalists have long complained that America's visa rules keep aspiring entrepreneurs who lack U.S. passports from starting companies in the U.S. Now immigration authorities...

To Hire Seasonal Workers, 575 Pages of New Rules

Posted by: Nick Leiber on February 15

Employers who rely on low-skilled workers from abroad have a new set of rules to digest. On Feb. 10, the Labor Dept. issued 575 pages of regulations for its...

Small Business Exports Edge Up

Posted by: John Tozzi on February 02

Small businesses have increased their share of exports in the two years since President Obama set a goal to double U.S. sales abroad by 2015, according to new federal...

Small Business Share of Economy, Job Growth Shrinks

Posted by: John Tozzi on January 31

It's no secret that the years since the financial crisis have been tough on small business. What's more surprising, though, is that their role in the U.S. economy had already...

Obama Seeks 'On-Ramp' for More Startups to Go Public

Posted by: John Tozzi on January 31

The White House called for making it easier for small companies to raise money by selling shares to the public as part of a package of proposals intended to aid...

Obama Makes SBA Chief a Cabinet Member

Posted by: John Tozzi on January 13

The government's top official charged with advocating for small business is now a member of the White House cabinet, President Obama announced today. Along with the move, Obama asked Congress...

Corporate America Pledges $1.2 Billion in Services to Boost Startups

Posted by: Nick Leiber on January 06

Steve Case (center) kicked off the Startup America Partnership at the White House last January. Steve Case and Scott Case dropped by the Bloomberg offices in New York yesterday...

Federal R&D Grants to Small Business Near Reauthorization

Posted by: Nick Leiber on December 13

A deal to reauthorize the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs, which were set to expire this Friday, is close to being approved, according...

Regulatory Thicket: Barrier to Small Business, or Political Bogeyman?

Posted by: John Tozzi on November 23

We often hear about how much government regulation hurts business, and small business in particular. For example, here's GOP Rep. Eric Cantor over the summer calling for repealing "job-destroying...

British Government Eyes Lending Directly to Small Businesses

Posted by: John Tozzi on November 16

Since the 2008 financial crisis, the British government has been much more aggressive than the United States in getting the banks it bailed out to lend to small businesses. Through...

Improving Minority Entrepreneurs' Access to Angel Capital

Posted by: Nick Leiber on November 14

Last night CNN aired Soledad O'Brien's "Black in America: The New Promised Land: Silicon Valley," which follows eight black tech entrepreneurs trying to raise equity capital in Silicon Valley. As...

Americans Trust Small Business on Job Growth: Gallup

Posted by: John Tozzi on November 04

Startups may or may not create jobs. Established small businesses almost certainly create fewer than most people think. But Americans trust small business owners the most in terms of their...

Paving the Way for Crowdfunding

Posted by: John Tozzi on November 03

The federal government is moving swiftly (by government standards) to make it easier for small businesses to raise capital in ways that haven't been possible before. Less than two months...

Up or Out: How Startups, Not Small Businesses, Create Jobs

Posted by: John Tozzi on November 01

A new paper from Bloomberg Government advances the notion that new ventures, rather than established small businesses, drive job creation. From the report by BGov economist Ian Hathaway, who analyzed...

Another Government Website for Small Business

Posted by: John Tozzi on October 28

Earlier this year, the wonks at the Government Accountability Office looked at how much different government agencies replicate similar efforts. For example, the federal government has 80 programs that deal...

Easing Student Loan Burdens for Entrepreneurs

Posted by: John Tozzi on October 26

With student debt loads haunting college grads and jobless joining street protests, President Obama yesterday announced plans to ease student loan burdens by capping payments at 10 percent of what...

Asking Entrepreneurs for Help Improving the U.S. Visa Process

Posted by: Nick Leiber on October 11

Business schools and venture capital firms have long organized entrepreneur-in-residence programs, tapping seasoned founders for a year or two to mentor students or evaluate potential investments. Now U.S. Citizenship and...

National Science Foundation Aims to Turn Research Into Startups

Posted by: John Tozzi on July 29

This is a guest post by Bloomberg Businessweek reporter Victoria Stilwell. The National Science Foundation wants to take researchers' big ideas from the laboratory to marketplace through a new program...

'Buy Young' Movement Supports Gen Y Entrepreneurs

Posted by: John Tozzi on July 12

Our Time, a new nonprofit group trying to expand the reach of Americans under 30 in Washington, is launching a campaign July 13 to encourage people to spend money at...

First Dollars Trickle from $30B Small Business Lending Fund

Posted by: John Tozzi on July 07

The U.S. Treasury has made its first investments in community banks through a program intended to encourage them to lend to small businesses. Six community banks received a total of...

Senators Seek More Disclosure For Business Credit Cards

Posted by: John Tozzi on June 14

Four Senators today called for more disclosure on business credit card offers so cardholders will understand that business cards are not protected by the same laws as regular consumer cards...

White House Says Small Biz Recovery a Work in Progress

Posted by: John Tozzi on May 16

Small businesses have begun to create jobs, White House officials said today, though the recovery is not as robust as they would like. The White House released a report today...

New Dyslexia Documentary Explains Entrepreneur Link

Posted by: Nick Leiber on May 12

In 2007, Julie Logan, a professor of entrepreneurship at Cass Business School in London, released the results of a study of 102 entrepreneurs in the U.S. showing that 35 percent...

The White House's New Campaign to Encourage Startups

Posted by: Nick Leiber on January 31

Last week Sharon Vosmek, the CEO of Astia, a not-for-profit group created to help companies run by women that need outside capital, stopped by our offices to appear on Bloomberg...

Senate Clears Way for $30 Billion Small Business Fund

Posted by: John Tozzi on July 23

Washington is poised to launch its most direct attempt to revive small business lending since the financial crisis with a plan to invest up to $30 billion of federal money...

Fed: Small Business Credit Card Reform Not Worth Costs

Posted by: John Tozzi on June 01

Giving small businesses the same credit card protections that consumers now have is not worth the potentially higher costs and reduced credit, the Federal Reserve Board said in a report...

Obama Pushes Small Business Lending Bill

Posted by: John Tozzi on May 25

President Obama asked Congress today to pass a package of small business initiatives, including a plan to bolster small banks' lending with $30 billion. The package also includes $2 billion...

Fed Misses Deadline for Small Biz Credit Card Report

Posted by: John Tozzi on May 25

The credit card reform that Congress passed last year to protect consumers from practices like retroactive interest rate hikes did not cover small business credit cards. The law did direct...

Bill Would Expand Aid for Manufacturers

Posted by: John Tozzi on February 26

Back in December I wrote a story about a Michigan program to help manufacturers trying to diversify into new industries get the loans they need to do that. The $13.2...

Bankers Urged to Get to Know Borrowers

Posted by: John Tozzi on February 08

Regulators want the nation's banks to get to know their small business customers better. In a statement Friday, federal and state regulators said banks shouldn't curtail credit based on negative...

Up to $1 Billion from TARP to Go to CDFIs

Posted by: Nick Leiber on February 03

Earlier today Treasury officials announced a new initiative that will use up to $1 billion from the Troubled Asset Relief Program to provide lower-cost capital to banks, credit unions, and...

Jobs Credit Talk May Delay Hiring

Posted by: John Tozzi on January 29

If the government plans to give a tax credit for new hires to small businesses, as President Obama indicated Wednesday in his State of the Union address, Congress and the...

About that $30 Billion...

Posted by: John Tozzi on January 28

One more note on Obama's plan to direct $30 billion in funds from the Troubled Asset Relief Program to community banks for small business lending. Making such a program work...

What Obama Said About Small Business

Posted by: John Tozzi on January 28

A short but prominent section of President Obama's State of the Union focused on helping small businesses to create jobs. Here's a look at what he said and what it...

Supporting Diaspora Entrepreneurs

Posted by: John Tozzi on January 12

Solar powered ovens could help prevent deforestation in countries like Uganda, where people in poor villages cut down trees for cooking fuel. Manufacturing them in Uganda could create jobs and...

Obama Pushes Small Business Aid for Job Recovery

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 08

The president pledged to extend loan aid and tax breaks to small businesses and to create a new tax credit for hiring new workers in a speech at the Brookings...

Introducing: The Small Business Policy Ticker

Posted by: John Tozzi on October 17

We’re testing an idea we hope will help you follow the policy news that matters to small business owners. We call it the Small Business Policy Ticker. The feed below...

Do Small Businesses Need Consumer Financial Protections?

Posted by: John Tozzi on October 16

In the aftermath of the crisis spawned by subprime mortgages, Congress is trying to create an agency to police consumer financial products. The latest reports sound like lawmakers are pulling...

Government Pushes Exports for Small Business

Posted by: Amy Barrett on October 01

Fred Hochberg, chairman and president of the Export-Import Bank of the United States wants to get small business to think globally. Ex-Im, along with the Small Business Administration, Commerce Department...

Weigh in on the Pros and Cons of Outsourcing Small Jobs

Posted by: Nick Leiber on August 02

This is a guest post by BusinessWeek contributor Vivek Wadhwa. Outsourcing has become such a toxic issue in the U.S. that even the President has rallied against it. The assumption...

Obama on Balancing Needs of Small Business and Multinationals

Posted by: John Tozzi on July 29

We just published an interview that BW editor Stephen Adler and Washington Bureau Chief Jane Sasseen did with President Obama in the Oval Office earlier this week. Among other things,...

In France: the Government is Pushing Small Business

Posted by: Stacy Perman on July 25

In America we like to say that small business is the engine that drives the economy, but in France, not so much. That conventional axiom however has been turned on...

Health Care Lobbyists...Partisan?

Posted by: John Tozzi on July 08

We've been covering the health care reform debate in Washington because small business owners have a huge stake in finding a solution that reduces costs and expands coverage. And following...

The Anatomy of an Entrepreneur

Posted by: Nick Leiber on July 08

This is a guest blog by Emily Schmitt, who joined BusinessWeek’s Small Business team and Investing team in June. When Ken Rapp was 16 years old, his mom died of...

Who Represents Small Business in Health Care Reform?

Posted by: John Tozzi on July 07

There’s a YouTube video making the rounds that takes aim at two progressive groups lobbying for health care reform, the Small Business Majority and the Main Street Alliance. The video,...

Credit Card Reform: Are You a Business, Consumer, or Both?

Posted by: John Tozzi on May 01

We got some great comments on our post yesterday about how credit card protections passed in the House won't help small business cardholders. There's a bigger theme here worth noting:...

Will Credit Card Reform Abandon Small Business Owners?

Posted by: John Tozzi on April 29

Congress is scheduled to vote on the Credit Cardholders Bill of Rights Thursday, which would protect cardholders from some aggressive practices like two-cycle billing, applying payments in a way that...

More Reaction to Obama's Small Business Plan

Posted by: Stacy Perman on March 18

Last October when I spoke with Maryann Ferenc the owner of the Tampa, Fla.-based Mise en Place, a restaurant and catering event business about the government bailout, she found the...

Reacting to Obama’s Small Business Stimulus Package

Posted by: Stacy Perman on March 16

Last fall when the government passed what was then a $700 billion economic bailout package, largely intended to prop up failing institutions such as AIG and Citibank, one could hear...

Small Business Economy Report

Posted by: John Tozzi on February 12

The SBA Office of Advocacy released its annual Small Business Economy report today. (The PDF, which weighs in at 413 pages, is here.) Since this report mainly looks at data...

Meg Whitman: Small Business Governor?

Posted by: Stacy Perman on February 09

Former eBay CEO Meg Whitman, considered a champion of small business has announced her intention to run for Governor of California. While national co-chair of John McCain’s presidential campaign she...

Small business, big regulation, big problems?

Posted by: John Tozzi on February 05

I had a talk today with Steve King, researcher and blogger at Small Biz Labs. King got in touch after reading my post on the tension between regulating industry and...

When will regulation fit the size of business?

Posted by: John Tozzi on February 02

Crafters and other makers of children's products up in arms over the CPSIA are breathing a bit easier this week. Many small business owners have been frantic for weeks because...

Misinformation and the CPSIA

Posted by: John Tozzi on January 15

There's some talk today about misinformation around the CPSIA after a TV interview that commission spokeswoman Julie Vallese did. (For those just joining us, CPSIA is a new product safety...

Track CPSIA news on the Business Exchange

Posted by: John Tozzi on January 14

For those of you trying to keep pace with all the news about the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, I just wanted to plug the new topic page we built...

Some answers (sort of) on the CPSIA

Posted by: John Tozzi on January 14

One of the biggest problems in the firestorm over the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act has been a lack of clarity from regulators. (Again, this is the new law intended...

Google trends on CPSIA: they care in Hong Kong too

Posted by: John Tozzi on January 13

I love to check Google Trends to gauge the interest in a moving news story. So I looked at CPSIA search terms, and the screen grab below gives you a...

Regulator warned that lead toy ban was not practical

Posted by: John Tozzi on January 13

I found this October 2007 article by the Times' Stephen Labaton while researching the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act. (That's the law that small producers of children's goods say threatens...

Using social tools to fight the CPSIA

Posted by: John Tozzi on January 12

Thanks to those of you I've heard from in response to Friday's post on the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act. (This is the law that people who make hand made...

Small businesses say flaws in new product safety law will force them to shut

Posted by: John Tozzi on January 09

I just started looking into a story on the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, after a reader on Twitter alerted me to it a few days ago. The law is...

What the auto bailout means to small business

Posted by: John Tozzi on December 12

The New York Times today looks at how suppliers are being affected by the trouble in Detroit. If GM or Chrysler files Chapter 11 -- a growing possibility since the...

Senator Olympia Snowe on Change at the SBA

Posted by: Jeremy Quittner on December 02

The Small Business Administration, with its loan programs, coaching, and educational curriculum is vital to the nation’s small businesses. That’s particularly true now, with the U.S. economy in full...

The Big Three and the Small 50,000

Posted by: John Tozzi on November 24

As I was reading about the auto industry bailout on the way into work this morning, a question occurred to me: How many small businesses depend on the US auto...

Is TARP Really a TRAP?

Posted by: Amy Barrett on November 19

The Treasury’s capital purchase program, the system for injecting capital into the nation’s banks, may look like a give away on the surface. But look a bit closer and there’s...

Ralph Nader: Why Small Business Owners Are the True Capitalists

Posted by: Stacy Perman on October 28

For the past four decades, consumer advocate and lawyer Ralph Nader has been instrumental in uncovering government and corporate waste and abuse and has organized millions of citizens to...

Beware of Unintended Consequences

Posted by: Amy Barrett on October 22

Entrepreneurs have hardly been overwhelmed by government efforts to help them weather the current economic storm. So some may have cheered on Oct. 20 when the Small Business Administration asked...

McCain and Obama on Taxes for Small Business Owners

Posted by: Nick Leiber on October 16

Whose tax policies are better for small business owners? That's a question that continued to be raised in last night's final presidential debate, with both candidates using the example of...

Your chance to cut red tape

Posted by: John Tozzi on September 23

Want to re-write the federal regulations that affect your business? Then take a look at the SBA's Regulatory Review and Reform Initiative. The idea is that you can tell the...

Training supports entrepreneurship in underserved communities

Posted by: John Tozzi on September 12

Today we bring you excerpts of my conversation about race and entrepreneurship with Robert Fairlie, one of the leading experts on the subject. Fairlie answered my questions about his new...

Suggest questions on race and entrepreneurship

Posted by: John Tozzi on September 04

Next week I'm scheduled to interview Robert Fairlie, a UC Santa Cruz economics professor and co-author with Alicia Robb of a new book called Race and Entrepreneurial Success. Fairlie's book,...

The Dearth of Small Business Data

Posted by: John Tozzi on August 28

It's impossible to find good, current, reliable data on small businesses. The Economic Census, conducted every five years, takes years to crunch the numbers. Data from the 2007 survey won't...

The Lost Season

Posted by: Amy Barrett on August 27

Summer's winding down-but it's been a tough one for many seasonal business owners. Due to political games on Capitol Hill, Congress failed to pass a measure that would have lifted...

No Help From Uncle Sam

Posted by: Amy Barrett on July 23

Government regulators wasted no time in hatching a rescue plan for mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac-long run by well-connected Beltway insiders. And given the key role Fannie and...

The Day After the Big Box Comes to Town

Posted by: Stacy Perman on July 10

After talking to filmmaker Hanson Hosein about the march of Big Box stores in post-Katrina New Orleans, I got to thinking. Obviously, the long-held belief is that when the Wal-Mart’s,...

Still Looking For Independent America

Posted by: Stacy Perman on July 08

In 2005, the husband and wife film making team of Hanson Hosein and Heather Hughes chronicled their road trip across 32 states to see how mom and pop shops were...

Does Wal-Mart Really Hurt Small Business?

Posted by: Amy Barrett on June 30

It's conventional wisdom that when it comes to small companies, Wal-Mart is bad news. The press is full of stories about how Wal-Mart comes to small towns and leaves a...

Health care holding entrepreneurs back?

Posted by: John Tozzi on June 24

If health insurance becomes affordable outside of the employer-based system, would it open the floodgates for would-be entrepreneurs who are only holding on to corporate jobs to keep their coverage?

About

What's it like to run your own company today? Entrepreneurs face multiple hurdles new and old, from raising capital and managing employees to keeping up with technology and competing in a global marketplace. In this blog, the Small Business channel's John Tozzi and Nick Leiber discuss the news, trends, and ideas that matter to small business owners. Follow them on Twitter @newentrepreneur.

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