Business Trends

May 18th, 2016 by

by Raymond J. Keating- The latest Senior Loan Officer Survey from the Federal Reserve raises more questions about the state of business development. Tighter Standards At the outset, it was noted that regarding commercial and industrial loans, there was some tightening of standards coupled with a decline in demand for such loans. Meanwhile, commercial real […]

April 16th, 2016 by

by Raymond J. Keating- On April 14, I testified before the House Financial Services Committee, Subcommittee on Capital Markets and Government Sponsored Enterprises on the topic of “The JOBS Act at Four: Examining Its Impact and Proposals to Further Enhance Capital Formation.” The focus of the hearing was to not only review what’s happened with […]

March 31st, 2016 by

MNI and the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) released the Chicago Business Barometer, also known as Chicago Purchasing Manager Index or Chicago PMI, for March on March 31. The Chicago PMI bounced back by six points to 53.6. A measure of 50 marks the dividing line between expansion and contraction. As noted in the report, […]

March 23rd, 2016 by

  This week marks the 6th year anniversary of the Affordable Care Act. Is the small business tax credit working? By Barbara Weltman- The Small Business Health Care Tax Credit was created by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to encourage small employers to provide health coverage for employees. At the time of creation in 2010, […]

March 16th, 2016 by

by Raymond J. Keating, Chief Economist- Let’s hope the service sector of our economy is chugging along because based on the latest data, consumers and the industrial sector aren’t looking so hot. On March 15, the Census Bureau released its latest numbers on retail sales, and they declined by 0.1 percent in February, which followed […]

March 2nd, 2016 by

We need a new tune by Raymond J. Keating- The under-performing economy continues like a broken record. The story has been the same since this recovery started in mid-2009. That is, for nearly seven years the U.S. has experienced economic growth that, on average, has run at about half of what it should be during […]

February 5th, 2016 by

By Raymond Keating- On Friday, February 5, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics released its first look at January employment data. And amidst other negative economic reports – such as poor GDP growth, sad industrial production numbers, declining productivity, and a slowdown in the service sector according to the latest non-manufacturing report – the jobs […]

January 6th, 2016 by

by Raymond J. Keating- It’s the New Year, and Congress is getting back to work. Some believe that the last-minute passage of a tax-extender package in December may have cleared the way for tax reform to move closer to reality in 2016. Of course, this would be great from a small business perspective. The Hill […]

December 30th, 2015 by

Can you guess which of these states offer a more favorable policy environment for entrepreneurs and small business? by Raymond J. Keating- The four largest states are split on the direction people are moving. According to the latest U.S. Census Bureau population estimates, the four largest states in the U.S. are California (39.1 million residents), […]

December 23rd, 2015 by

In a December 23 story in Small Business Trends, SBE Council chief economist is interviewed by Anita Campbell on his Economic Outlook Report for 2016, specifically about the trend in self-employment. As noted by Campbell in her interview with Keating, he explained “the number of self-employed is an important indication of the status of startups and entrepreneurship. […]

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