Advocacy Research and Symposium Focus on Finance

Release Date: 
Wednesday, September 14, 2011 - 4:00am
Release Number: 
11-27 ADV
Patrick Morris


Washington, D.C. – The Office of Advocacy today released three reports on small business financing in advance of a September 15 conference titled “Small Business Capital Crunch: Debt and Equity.” Like the conference, Frequently Asked Questions about Small Business Finance looks at both the debt and equity aspects of the small business balance sheet. Small businesses borrow for four principal reasons: starting a business, purchasing inventory, expanding, and strengthening the firm’s financials.

“Small business owners across the country tell me that access to capital remains one of their central concerns,” said Chief Counsel for Advocacy Winslow Sargeant. “The research we are releasing today will add to the understanding of small business financing needs and sources, and will inform policymakers seeking to strengthen the productive small business sector.”

The Finance FAQ is replete with data about where small businesses obtain their financing, including 15 graphs showing types of startup and expansion financing, as well as trends in bank lending, interest rates, venture capital, initial public offerings, SBIC funding, and SBA loans.

Advocacy also released two studies on the availability of credit from banks and credit unions:

  • Bank Liquidity Pressures and the Availability of Bank Credit to Small Firms: Was the 2007-2009 Credit Crisis Different?, authored by Joe Peek, finds that the liquidity of bank assets became an important factor in the financial crisis, as healthier banks tended to shy away from small commercial and industrial loans and small commercial real estate loans.
  • The Growing Impact of Credit Unions on Small Business Lending, authored by James Wilcox, looks at annual state-level data and national aggregate data for banks and credit unions from 1986 to 2010 and finds that, even during the financial crisis, credit unions may have provided some extra business lending in response to reductions in business lending by banks.

To view the full reports, visit

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, and interests of small business before Congress, the White House, federal agencies, federal courts, and state policymakers. Regional advocates and an office in Washington, D.C., support the Chief Counsel’s efforts. For more information, visit, or call (202) 205-6533.

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