Small Business Brief for 11/25

Politics and Government

Foundation Laid for Obama Stimulus Package
President-elect Barack Obama had his aides develop a plan to quickly pump money into the economy, create millions of jobs and deliver a tax cut to the poor and middle class. They came up with a two-year economic rescue is expected to cost about $500 billion.

Small Business Health Care Woes
U.S. senators are proposing legislative fixes for high health insurance costs.

Economics and Labor Issues

Entrepreneurs Who Kept Coming Back
Recessions can inspire great entrepreneurial achievement. Here we offer examples from the last 200 years of entrepreneurs who rose from the ashes.

Billions Expected for Credit Cards, Home, Student and Car Loans
The government introduced two programs to provide $800 billion to help unfreeze the market for consumer debt, which Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson calls vital to supporting the economy.

More Loans Available From SBA
The Small Business Administration has made more loans available to small businesses through local banks.

Fed to Boost Consumer Lending
The Federal Reserve Board has established a facility to help consumers and small businesses with their credit needs. Under the Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan Facility, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York will lend as much as $200 billion to holders of specific AAA-rated, asset-backed securities that are collateralized by small-business loans, credit card loans, student loans and auto loans.

FDIC Adds 54 Banks to its Problem List, Total Stands at 171
NEW YORK (AP) - The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. says its list of problem banks, those considered to be in trouble, shot up to 171 during the third quarter. That's up nearly 50 percent from 117 in the second quarter, and the highest number since late 1995.

Experts: Expect Slow Turnaround
Consultants see an increase in small businesses' troubles that need quick resolution if entrepreneurs hope to save their companies, saying that businesses need to be flexible now, remake their core around diminished sales, and make timely cutbacks.

Law and Regulation Enforcement

Lower Your Legal Bills

While you can't eliminate lawyers from your life, you can rely on them a little less.

OSHA Expected to Become New Battleground
Workers' advocates are expecting the new administration to usher in change at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, shifting toward safety-standard enforcement after a year riddled with on-the-job fatal accidents.

Startup Tax Waiver Not a Priority
Small-business owners may have to wait for President-elect Barack Obama to keep his campaign promises, including the pass on the capital-gains tax for startups.

Doing Business

Does Ego Interfere With Customer Service?

Some customer service situations start as minor problems but can quickly escalate into all-out war when sales people unknowingly make these situations worse.

Watch Out! Holiday Season Shoplifters!

The holiday season is one of joy and happiness, but it is also the time of year that brings out the thieves, robbers and crooks.

Sales and Marketing

Crisis Public Relations Crash Course
Here are some ideas on how to contain the problem before it does any real damage.

Growing Small Biz Trend: Social Networking Sites
Werner and Uschi Beck have seen traffic grow on their Cool Beans Cafe & Arts website since they began using social networking sites to promote their coffee shop, a growing trend in marketing for small businesses.

Starting Your Own Export Business
Launching an export business may seem difficult, but getting started is fairly straightforward. Start by developing your export compliance plan and then decide on the markets you wish to explore.