Small Business News Round-up – 2009/08/25

Here is this week’s news round-up for home business, micro business, sole-traders, freelancers, self-employed and any one who is interested in small business news from around the world.

US Home & Small Business News Roundup

  • Small businesses often put off disaster plan: There’s a brush fire bearing down on your small business. You’ve been told you have one hour to evacuate – which means you have one hour to come up with and execute a disaster preparation plan. This is a scenario similar to what thousands of small business…
  • Fed Says It Again: US Economy on Rebound: Stocks Surge after Bernanke Offers Another Upbeat Assessment on Economic Activity
  • Is the Small Business Credit Crunch at a Turning Point?: Is the credit crunch for small businesses approaching an end? There’s a hopeful sign in the of senior loan officers out from the Fed today (PDF): One of the 55 banks survey reported that it had eased credit standards for lending to small firms (under $50 million in sales) over the past three months.
  • Easing Small Players’ Losses In CIT Crisis: The business news media widely welcomed the “rescue” of Inc. when private capital committed $3 billion on July 20. But the benefits of that package favored CIT’s management and its “rescue” bondholders. All other stakeholders, including taxpayers and small business clients, were harmed. Thankfully, at the 11th hour, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York stepped in to prevent further damage.
  • SBA ‘very close’ to getting new watchdogs: Two independent watchdogs for the Small Business Administration appear to be headed for Senate confirmation in September.

Canada Home & Small Business News Roundup

  • Retail Sales Tax (RST) And…: An outline of the process of charging, collecting, and remitting retail sales tax (RST) in Ontario, using the example of a small retail business. This provincial sales tax explanation also applies to small businesses in BC, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.
  • First of six weekly Business Barometer updates by CFIB: Small firms more pessimistic; pockets of strength remain: Toronto – As turmoil in the investment banking sector in the global economy spreads, pessimism is growing among small business owners in this country, according to results from a survey conducted this week by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB). Results show the Business Barometer index falling considerably in only a few short weeks – to 91.0 in the first week of October from 101.8 in CFIB’s quarterly survey conducted during early September. The index still remains measurably above its record low of 85.0 taken in mid 1990, but below the 95.4 recorded in October, 2001.
  • Where Do the Start-Up Expenses Go?: Where do the startup expenses go? when you’re preparing an income statement for a business plan, asks one Forum visitor. Other questions and discussions in the Small Business Canada Forum right…

Australia Home & Small Business News Roundup

  • Small business still to see growth: RISING business and consumer sentiment have not translated into actual conditions on the ground, a leading business group says. The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, backed by the results of its latest small business survey, believes the economy remains contractionary and suggestions the worst is over is “jumping the gun”. The June quarter survey revealed things were on the up for small business although the level of their expectation of economic performance – 36.9 – was well below the 50-point mark which indicates recovery would happen within a year
  • Opposition lashes Small Business Minister on franchising report delay: The Federal Opposition has criticised Small Business Minister Craig Emerson over his delay in responding to a parliamentary inquiry into the franchising sector.
  • Small business conditions begin to stabilise, but employer group warns against rate rises: Small business conditions are beginning to stabilise, but SMEs face significant challenges before the economy will recover, according to the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry small business…
  • The ACCC warns on trademark invoice scam: The Australian Competition and Consumer Commissions has warned SME business owners to be vigilant of mail scams, after receiving over 150 complains in the last month about a trademark scam.
  • SMEs continue to invest in online, mobile internet soars: SMEs have been successful in establishing themselves online but should now prepare for the wave of users accessing the internet through mobile phones, a new Sensis report shows.

UK & Ireland Home & Small Business News Roundup

  • Just one in four small firms say worst is over: Only a quarter of small business owners believe the recession has bottomed out and optimism for the future varies widely across the UK
  • SMEs Don’t See Bank Manager: Most small businesses never see their bank managers, according to a recent survey. Research by Bank of Cyprus UK found that 64 per cent of small to medium sized enterprises fall into this category.
  • There is Another Way: The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) is challenging what it calls “a potential monopoly of power being built up by high street banks over small firms seeking finance”, two years after the credit crunch started.
  • Basic Skills gap hitting employment, says FPB on eve of A-Level results: On the eve of the publication of the latest A-Level results, the FPB is warning that small businesses are struggling to recruit young workers with basic skills.
  • £600,000 ‘creative credits’ up for grabs: AN INNOVATIVE £600,000 investment scheme designed to give a double-barrelled boost to small businesses and the creative sector was launched in Manchester today.
    As always this list is not exhaustive, but I hope it will give you a little overview. — ST.
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