WASHINGTON, D.C. – Despite more recent numbers showing improvement in the U.S. economy, the economic picture for small firms at the end of 2008 offered few bright spots, according to the 2009 edition of The Small Business Economy released by the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy. Small businesses in most industries, especially in the construction industry hard hit by the housing market downturn, saw declines in employment. Along with declining sales, most small businesses faced a less accommodating credit market, especially in the second half of 2008.
“Many small businesses were adversely affected by the economy of 2008, as other small firms prepared to help shape the recovery,” said Acting Chief Counsel for Advocacy Shawne McGibbon. “Policymakers have made it clear that it’s important to understand and respond to both the recession’s effects on small firms and small firms’ role in creating new economic activity. This report reviews changes in the economy of 2008 as well as recent Advocacy research on small business.”
The 2009 edition of The Small Business Economy: A Report to the President, is the latest in the Office of Advocacy’s annual research reports. The report reviews the economic environment for small businesses in 2008, including federal procurement and the financing marketplaces. The first chapter also looks briefly at some key issues for small business, including the cost and availability of health insurance, retaining a quality work force, and global competition. Appendices provide data on small business and a summary of Office of Advocacy research published in 2008.
The Office of Advocacy, the “small business watchdog” of the federal government, examines the role and status of small business in the economy and independently represents the views of small business to federal agencies, Congress, and the President. It is the source for small business statistics presented in user-friendly formats, and it funds research into small business issues.
For more information and a complete copy of the report, visit the Office of Advocacy website at www.sba.gov/advo. Print copies are also available upon request to the Office of Advocacy (202) 205-6533.
The Office of Advocacy of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is an independent voice for small business within the federal government. The presidentially appointed Chief Counsel for Advocacy advances the views, concerns, interests of small business before Congress, the White House, federal agencies, federal courts, and state policy makers. For more information, call (202) 205-6533.