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Small business health costs: Up this year and next?

Associated Press

Nov. 18

The vast majority of small businesses are paying more for health insurance for their employees under the health care law, and many expect their costs to keep going up next year, according to a survey by the advocacy group National Small Business Association.

Ninety percent of the 810 owners surveyed said their costs are up in 2015 over last year, and 84 percent expect to pay more in 2016. (more)

Fewer small businesses offer health insurance as cost keeps rising

American City Business Journals

Nov. 11

Fewer small businesses offered health insurance to their employees this year, and more are considering dropping it next year due to rising costs.

That’s according to a survey of 810 small businesses conducted recently by the National Small Business Association. It found that 65 percent offered health insurance this year, down from 70 percent the year before. (more)

From Breach Coaches to VPNs: How Small Businesses Can Protect Their Data

TravelMarket.com

Nov. 16

Indeed, Mom-and-Pop businesses, like many travel agencies, are especially vulnerable to data breaches. A 2013 National Small Business Association study found that nearly half of small businesses have been victims of a cyber-attack, and that it cost them an average of $9,000.

Three baseline IT security tips for small businesses

Tech Republic

Oct. 29

According to the National Small Business Association 2014 year end report, both the frequency and cost of small and middle-market business hacks are on the rise. In 2013 the cost of an average cyber-attack for a small business was just over $8,000 per attack. In 2014, that number jumped to over $20,000.

House votes to revive Export-Import Bank, but Senate path isn’t clear

American City Business Journals

Oct. 27

Business groups ranging from the National Association of Manufacturers to the National Small Business Association have been lobbying Congress to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank. They contend U.S. exporters are losing overseas deals to foreign competitors who have access to financing from their countries’ export credit agencies.

How Big Government and Big Business Stick It to Small U.S. Businesses

The Daily Beast

Oct. 25

Only 35 percent of small-business owners, according to a recent survey by the National Small Business Association, express optimism about the economy.

Five EMV Myths: Are You Ready for the Liability Shift?

Apparel

Oct. 1

In fact, the National Small Business Association’s technology survey found that almost half of respondents had been targeted by hackers. While large businesses often make headlines when hacked, many small businesses suffer behind the scenes.

Congress foolishly limits power of Export-Import Bank to help U.S. businesses

Tampa Tribune

Sept. 27

Indeed, it actually helps the private sector, providing guarantees to private banks for loans to exporters, and 98 percent of its deals include partnering with a private bank, according to the National Small Business Association.

Congress must reward, protect U.S. inventors

The Journal-Times

Sept. 122

Fortunately a coalition of groups from across the spectrum have come together to oppose the omnibus legislation — including the Association of American Universities, Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association, the National Small Business Association, the National Venture Capital Association, the Club for Growth Heritage Action and others who are trying to amend the bill.

More exports mean more jobs: Renew Ex-Im charter

Sept. 8

By: Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.)

The National Association of Manufacturers, the National Small Business Association, the Financial Services Roundtable and the Chamber of Commerce all support reauthorizing Ex-Im. The Chamber has organized a letter in support of Ex-Im signed by more than 1,000 American businesses and associations.

 

Overtime angst: New rules from the U.S. Department of Labor up the ante in employer liability, change classifications

Crain’s Detroit

Aug. 23

The Small Business Association of Michigan and National Small Business Association have estimated that the overtime rule could cost a small business an average of $100 to $600 in direct costs and $320 to $2,700 in new payroll costs per employee within the rule’s first year and could lead to additional administrative costs from scheduling and monitoring employees who are overtime-eligible.

The proposal “will have a significant negative impact on small business and startups. This rule change affects both flexibility on how a small business operates but also adds costs to their day-to-day balance sheet,” SBAM President and CEO Rob Fowler said in a statement to Crain’s. “This would be a significant new challenge for job creation right at a time when we are starting to see a real recovery in Michigan and new employment opportunities.”

 

Hacking a big danger for small businesses

Associated Press

Aug. 19

THE costs associated with computer and website attacks can run well into the thousands and even millions of dollars for a small company. Many small businesses have been attacked – 44 per cent, according to a 2013 survey by the National Small Business Association, an advocacy group. Those companies had costs averaging $US8,700

 

Pittsburgh’s small businesses face slew of new obligations

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Aug. 19

“If you were to poll the average business owner on all of these and ask them if they are real, they would probably check one or two and put question marks next to the rest,” said Marilyn Landis, founder of Basic Business Concepts on the North Side and former chair of the National Small Business Association.

 

Small-business owners’ optimism bumping along

Associated Press

Aug. 11

The survey was in line with others showing a dip in optimism about the economy, but that owners feel confident about their companies. A semiannual survey released by the advocacy group National Small Business Association last month showed nearly three-quarters of the 625 owners questioned are confident, unchanged from late last year. Three-quarters expect the economy to be flat or recessionary in the next year.

 

Online Lending Basics for Small-Business Loans

NerdWallet

Aug. 4

Online lending is still nascent, but it’s growing fast. Two percent of small businesses have used online lenders in the past year – up from 1% last year – according to a July 2015 report by the National Small Business Association. The online small-business loan dollars outstanding is doubling every year, while outstanding small-business bank loans are in decline, according to a 2014 Harvard Business School working paper.

 

Congress fails to revive Export-Import bank: How will it impact US businesses?

Christian Science Monitor

July 30

“As businesses owners looking at the bottom line and responsibility to shareholders, they’ve [big businesses] got to be looking at leaving. It would be foolish not to. We have to expect that larger companies are going to look at going overseas,” says Molly Day, Vice President of public affairs at the National Small Business Association.

“While the direct impact for small businesses using Ex-Im is that they won’t be able to get their jobs done, when you’re looking at a Boeing or other big businesses that can move operations overseas, there are a ton of small businesses and their supply chains that are going to be impacted by that, too,” she adds, noting that the NSBA’s small business members voted the Ex-Im among their top ten priorities. “So it’s not just Boeing cutting workers and moving operations overseas, it’s also how many small businesses are going to be impacted by no longer having those contracts with Boeing.”

 

Small businesses expect flat economy over next 12 months

NBC 9News – Denver

July 30

More than half of small business owners expect the economy to be flat over the next 12 months, according to a survey conducted this summer by the National Small Business Association.

That compares with 28 percent who expect the economy to grow and 19 percent who think another recession is coming.

Despite this less-than-bullish outlook about the overall economy, 57 percent of small business owners expect their sales to grow over the next 12 months, and 49 percent expect higher profits. Plus, 33 percent expect to add more workers. More than 70 percent are confident about the future of their businesses.

Economic uncertainty topped the list of challenges for their businesses, followed by the cost of health insurance, regulatory burdens, a decline in customer spending and lack of qualified workers.

 

Small businesses expect flat economy over next 12 months

Boston Business Journal 

July 30

Despite this less-than-bullish outlook about the overall economy, 57 percent of small business owners expect their sales to grow over the next 12 months, and 49 percent expect higher profits. Plus, 33 percent expect to add more workers. More than 70 percent are confident about the future of their businesses.

Economic uncertainty topped the list of challenges for their businesses, followed by the cost of health insurance, regulatory burdens, a decline in customer spending and lack of qualified workers.

Small business owners are almost as worried about inflation as they are about rising interest rates, the survey found.

Nearly 70 percent said they’ve been able to obtain adequate financing for their businesses, down slightly from a year ago.

 

Why Isn’t Access to Credit for Small Business Improving in 2015?

Entrepreneur

July 28

In that piece last year, I expressed concern about the “choke point” in small business financing. I’m still concerned. The 2014 Year-end Economic Report of the National Small Business Association cites an uptick in small business owners’ overall positivity about the economy, but also notes that “nearly one in five small firms cannot meet increased sales demand due to inability to garner financing.”.

 

Clinton as champion of small business? That’s Hill-arious

Fox News

July 24

survey released by the National Small Business Association in 2014 found that complying with Obamacare costs a small business, on average, more than $15,000 a year.

 

What Goldman Sachs Is Getting Right About Small Businesses

Inc.com

July 8

By way of comparison, 45 percent of businesses surveyed by the National Small Business Association in its annual report for 2014 increased revenues for the year, and just 22 percent of businesses added employees.

 

5 tips to protect your business against cyber crime

The Tennessean

June 19

There’s a misconception that larger companies, like the Targets and Home Depots of the world, are more likely to be the target of an attack. But, according to the National Small Business Association, 44 percent of small businesses have experienced a cyber attack.

 

After Obama Trade Setback, Small U.S. Companies to Put Overseas Plans on Hold

Wall Street Journal

June 12

Molly Day, a spokeswoman for the Small Business Exporters Association, said the failure of Congress pass a package of trade legislation on Friday was “bad for small business.”

Led by Democrats, lawmakers voted down legislation aimed at assisting U.S. workers displaced by global trade, putting into jeopardy separate legislation that empowers the president to negotiate tamper-proof trade deals–known as trade promotion authority, or TPA. A second vote on the workers-aid bill is expected early next week.

“Absent TPA, the U.S. has extremely limited ability to work with other countries in crafting trade deals which are of huge benefit to small firms and reduce many regulatory burdens faced when trying to conduct business overseas,” Ms. Day said.

 

Hackers Go After Little Fish, Too, While Trawling for Credit Cards

New York Times

June 10

Still, half of 675 small businesses surveyed by the National Small Business Association reported being victims of hackers’ attacks last year, up from 44 percent in 2013. And of those companies that reported being hacked last year, 68 percent said they had been victimized at least twice.

 

Circle ID

3 Key Steps for SMBs to Protect Their Website and Critical Internet Services

June 5

The National Small Business Association (NBSA) recently released a report revealing that half of all small businesses have been the victim of a cyber-attack — and the cost of dealing with these attacks has skyrocketed to $20,752 per attack. In about a third of attacks, the victim’s website was taken down, often for days. The impact of such outages cannot be measured by the immediate lost revenue alone, as the long term impact of the harm to your reputation and customer loss cannot be easily calculated.

 

Wealth Adviser: Health-Care Royalties As an Income Alternative

Wall Street Journal

May 26

Why business-owner clients are a priority. There are some powerful reasons for advisers to focus their prospecting on business owners. About one in four business owners has a yearly income of at least $200,000, while just one in 17 non-business owners makes that much, Financial Advisor says. There’s also this: “Business owners by their very nature are extremely optimistic,” says Cleveland-based adviser Eric Tolbert, who is on the board of the National Small Business Association. “They always think tomorrow will be better where the general public doesn’t.”

 

Loans, taxes, regulations on small business election agenda

Associated Press

May 20

The advocacy group National small business Association wants regulations issued by federal agencies easier to be easier for small companies to comply with. Many are unclear, or are inconsistent with each other, NSBA Chairman Tim Reynolds says.

“Presidential candidates can have an enormous impact on how regulatory agencies would move forward,” says Reynolds, owner of Tribute Inc., a Hudson, Ohio, software company.

The NSBA is also looking for a president who can help a fragmented Congress end its gridlock.

“Effective leadership from the White House is all about organizing individuals on both sides of the legislature,” Reynolds says

 

Loans, taxes, regulations on small business election agenda

Associated Press

May 20

The advocacy group National Small Business Association wants regulations issued by federal agencies easier to be easier for small companies to comply with. Many are unclear, or are inconsistent with each other, NSBA Chairman Tim Reynolds says.

“Presidential candidates can have an enormous impact on how regulatory agencies would move forward,” says Reynolds, owner of Tribute Inc., a Hudson, Ohio, software company.

The NSBA is also looking for a president who can help a fragmented Congress end its gridlock.

“Effective leadership from the White House is all about organizing individuals on both sides of the legislature,” Reynolds says
Facebook gets some thumbs up for requiring vendors to pay $15/hr min wages

Washington Times

May 13

The Facebook policy is “unusual,” according to Molly Day, vice president of public affairs at the National Small Business Association. It represents “a far more involved role in the employment policies of a vendor than what most large firms currently do,” Ms. Day said.

Ms. Day, of the NSBA, said that experience shows setting thresholds can stymie growth and hiring. While a Facebook-sized company “may have the resources” to raise employees’ pay by 50 percent in a year and off paid leave and new-child benefits, “few small businesses” are similarly situated, she added.
Cybersecurity is a shared responsibility

The Daily Journal

May 12

Small- and medium-sized companies face some of the largest threats from cyberattacks. According to a survey by the National Small Business Association, half of the small business respondents said they have been victimized and the average cost of dealing with these attacks has jumped to $20,752 per attack from $8,699 two years ago. More education is needed to help small businesses combat this threat, so that they are better poised to take preventative measures against potential attacks.

 

How Healthy Are America’s Small Businesses?

Politics Cheat Sheet

May 12

In a study looking at 300 well-established small businesses in 2013, the National Small Business Association (NSBA) found that identifying and clearing workers wasn’t always a surefire process, with 20% saying they were unsure if they’d ever been given false ID from employees, and 14.8% saying they knew they had been.
For Cash-Strapped Small Businesses and Entrepreneurs, These Digital Solutions Provide Funds

Huffington Post

May 7

Partnering with Small Businesses
Another large P2P lender, Funding Circle, has partnered with the National Small Business Association (NSBA) to provide 65,000 active members with access to affordable loans and financial literacy tools. According to the company’s Co-Founder and U.S. Managing Director Sam Hodges, America’s 28 million small businesses deserve a better lending experience than what is currently available.

“Successful and established businesses shouldn’t have to scramble to access affordable financing that is critical to growing their business,” Hodges said. “Our partnership with the NSBA will connect more entrepreneurs directly with the capital they need to grow, hire more people and stimulate their local economies,” Hodges said. Funding Circle has funded over $1 billion in loans to 8,000 small business in the UK an the US.

 

Big issues weigh on Main Street heading into 2016

CNBC

May 4

“A big problem throughout the Great Recession that continues today is overall access to capital,” said Tim Reynolds, chair of the nonpartisan National Small Business Association and owner of Tribute, a small software company in Ohio.

 

Facebook Has 40 Million-Plus Small Business Pages

Forbes

April 30

The NSBA (National Small Business Association) last did their technology survey in 2013, but you can download their PDF here. It still offers some useful information. In that survey, they found that 16 percent were manufacturing businesses.

 

Top 4 risks facing your business this year

The Tennessean

April 23

You’ve probably heard about the Target, Home Depot and, most recently, Anthem cyber attacks. Since it’s typically the breaches of large, public companies that are publicized, many small and midsize businesses think they are safe from hackers. But, according to the National Small Business Association, 44 percent of small businesses have experienced a cyber attack and each incident cost the business an average of about $9,000.

 

Small Business Finds Its Voice on Free Trade

Bloomberg

April 23

Bernard is urging his congressional representative, Suzan DelBene, a Democrat, to vote for the fast-track bill. The National Small Business Association, a lobbying group in Washington, has also come out in favor of the legislation.

 

Small business leaders urge Congress to rethink cybersecurity measures

Washington Post

April 23

“It would be a step in the right direction, but not a panacea,” Todd McCracken, president of the National Small Business Association, said during a hearing held by the House Small Business Committee on Wednesday. He had been asked for his take on one of several bills teed up for a vote this week that would require businesses and governments to share details about data breaches and collaborate on ways to ward off attacks.

“Cybersecurity has emerged as a significant problem and concern for the small-business community,” McCracken said. He later added that “sharing cybersecurity information is useful, but what small businesses really need is to know how to use that information.”

His underlying point — that the government’s attempts to thwart cyber attacks must be coupled with stronger efforts to teach the business community how to detect and deal with attacks — was expressed by several experts on the panel. In other words, hacking attempts and data breaches are inevitable, they argued, especially against small businesses that criminals know are ill-prepared to defend themselves.

 

In patent debate, small inventors deserve a seat at the table

The Hill

April 15

As the Small Business Technology Council recently wrote on the legislation, “For small business, patents will become mostly unenforceable due to the proposed much higher upfront cost of litigation, thus making small business patents significantly less valuable. Loss of patent value constricts new company formation, chilling new investments, and choking job formation.”

 

Can Hillary Clinton win support from small business?

American City Business Journals

April 13

“All politicians make blunders,” said Molly Day, vice president of public affairs for the National Small Business Association.

What would help Clinton the most with small business owners is for her to actually listen to them, Day said. Small businesses don’t want to be pandered to; they want to be heard. That’s a message that any presidential candidate should take to heart.

Clinton could take a page out of her husband Bill Clinton’s playbook and announce that she would hold a White House Conference on Small Business, where representatives from across the ideological spectrum would gather to discuss policies that would benefit small businesses. The last one of these conferences was held in 1995, and was “kind of a pivotal moment” for how Bill Clinton was perceived by small businesses, Day said.

 

Statistically speaking: Most owners hire someone to do their taxes

News & Observer

April 13

Wednesday is April 15 – tax day – and according to the National Small Business Association’s 2015 Small Business Taxation Survey, 49 percent of owners file and pay by the deadline, while 27 percent file on time but request a payment extension. Here’s more from the report.

22% Owners who spend at least 120 hours a year dealing with their federal taxes.

85% Owners who have an accountant or tax practitioner handle their company’s taxes.

28% Owners who spend $1,001 to $5,000 a year on the administration of federal taxes.

25% Those who spend one to two hours each month on the administration of sales tax
What’s worse than paying taxes? Doing them, small businesses say

American City Business Journals

April 8

For most small businesses, doing taxes is more painful than paying taxes.

That’s according to this year’s National Small Business Association survey of small business owners on taxation issues. It found that 59 percent cited administrative burdens as the biggest challenge they face when it comes to federal taxes. That’s up from 53 percent a year ago.

The financial cost of taxes was cited as the biggest challenge by 41 percent of small business owners this year.

The complexity of the tax code is one reason why 85 percent of small businesses hire an accountant or other external tax practitioner to handle their taxes vs. doing them in-house. It also helps explain why 40 percent of small businesses get an extension for filing their taxes.

 

Is Your Small Business at Risk for a Cyber Attack?

Fox Business

April 7

Cybersecurity is in the news lately, with President Obama recently proposing legislation that would set federal standards for notifying consumers about data breaches. Consumers aren’t the only ones worried about a cyber attack: Small business owners, too, are concerned, says a recent report from the National Small Business Association.

More than nine out of 10 small business owners in the study cited cybersecurity as a concern. This is not an unfounded fear: Half of them report they’ve already suffered a cyber attack, with 61 percent of those attacks taking place in the last 12 months.

What happened to these entrepreneurs as a result of the attack? A service interruption was the most common problem, followed by the business website going down. In addition, 19 percent had either their business credit cards or bank account hacked.

The cost of cyber attacks is also on the rise. In 2014 the average cyber attack cost a small business $20,752, a substantial increase from the average of $8,699 an attack cost businesses in 2013.

 

Strong dollar puts pressure on ‘Made in USA’ manufacturers

CNBC

April 6

American manufacturers may be trying to beef up their domestic operations to find new sources of clients,” added Molly Day, a spokeswoman for the Small Business Exporters Association of the United States.

 

Obamacare: Not as Bad as It Could Have Been, But Still Awful
National Review

March 25

A survey by the National Small Business Association, for instance, found that 33 percent of small employers said they were not growing, due to the ACA; 14 percent were hiring more part-time workers; and 10 percent were reducing employee hours.

 

Small Businesses Must Export East to Maintain US Leadership

Huffington Post

March 23

In the National Small Business Association’s 2013 Exporting Survey, more than 85 percent of respondents said their company benefited from free trade agreements.

 

Business visits, focus on ISIS portend McCain 2016 run

Phoenix Business Journal

Feb. 20

McCain, 78, visited the new Phoenix manufacturing plant for Reynaers, Inc., a Belgian manufacturing company and spoke before the National Small Business Association’s annual meeting in Phoenix.

 

Cyber Attacks: Not Just a Problem for Governments and Giant Companies Anymore

Inc. Magazine

Feb. 20

Entrepreneurs are more optimistic than they’ve been in years, but that doesn’t mean you ought to rest easy.

Lingering questions regarding consumer spending weakness, government gridlock and worldwide economic uncertainty are surely weighing heavily on your mind these days. Plus, it’s increasingly evident that cyber attacks are no longer just a problem for giant companies.

This was the general sentiment that emerges from the National Small Business Association’s year-end economic report for 2014, out on Thursday. NSBA is a centrist small business advocacy group based in Washington, D.C.

 

Why small business groups are (nearly) united around the Keystone pipeline

Washington Post

Feb. 13

The National Small Business Association, another business lobbying group, has steered clear of taking a position specifically on the Keystone pipeline. However, in documents outlining its energy policy priorities for the year, the the group included the promotion of more adequate and affordable energy and a reduction in dependence on “unstable, unreliable and hostile foreign energy sources” among its objectives.

“To the extent that domestic energy sources are not adequate, then every reasonable measure should be taken to purchase our energy from allied trading partners,” NSBA executives wrote in the document.

 

 

 

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