Lend­ing land­scape is lit­tle-changed

The Register Citizen (Torrington, CT) - - BUSINESS -

The lend­ing en­vi­ron­ment for small and mid-sized busi­nesses has changed lit­tle this year com­pared with the end of 2017.

That's ac­cord­ing to a sur­vey of 1,237 com­pa­nies taken dur­ing the first quar­ter and re­leased Mon­day by re­searchers at Pep­per­dine Univer­sity's Grazia­dio School of Busi­ness and Man­age­ment and Dun & Brad­street Corp.

Com­pa­nies ques­tioned in the sur­vey found bor­row­ing less dif­fi­cult in the first three months of the year — 54 per­cent said it was hard to get credit, down from 58 per­cent in the fourth quar­ter. Go­ing for­ward, 56 per­cent ex­pect it will be dif­fi­cult to get credit, the same as in the fourth-quar­ter sur­vey.

Banks re­mained the largest source of credit for small and mid-sized com­pa­nies, with a third get­ting credit from ei­ther large or com­mu­nity banks, lit­tle changed from the fourth quar­ter. Thirty-seven per­cent didn't seek credit, also lit­tle changed.

An in­dex that shows how ac­ces­si­ble fi­nanc­ing is for small busi­nesses rose to 34.8 from 34.0 in the fourth quar­ter. A sep­a­rate in­dex that mea­sures de­mand for fi­nanc­ing rose to 36.4 from 36.2.

The sur­vey ques­tioned busi­nesses with an­nual rev­enue of up to $100 mil­lion from Dun & Brad­street's data­base. The com­pany com­piles credit re­ports on com­pa­nies.

Deal­ing with fed­eral in­come taxes is still a chore for small busi­ness own­ers even when they have an ac­coun­tant or tax pro­fes­sional han­dling their re­turns. That's the find­ing of a sur­vey re­leased last week by the ad­vo­cacy group Na­tional Small Busi­ness As­so­ci­a­tion.

The sur­vey, which ques­tioned 953 own­ers, found that a wide ma­jor­ity, 68 per­cent, give their re­turns to a tax pro to pre­pare. But 57 per­cent still said fed­eral taxes have a mod­er­ate or sig­nif­i­cant im­pact on the day-to-day oper­a­tion of their busi­nesses. One-third said they spend more than 40 hours a year on fed­eral taxes.

The ad­min­is­tra­tive bur­den posed by taxes is ex­pected to in­crease this year fol­low­ing the en­act­ment of the new tax law. Sixty-seven per­cent ex­pect pa­per­work and other tax-re­lated chores to be their big­gest tax bur­den this year, up from 60 per­cent in 2017.

Only 7 per­cent pre­dicted that fil­ing their taxes would be eas­ier as a re­sult of the law.

Thirty-six per­cent of own­ers have a rel­a­tively small fi­nan­cial bur­den from their fed­eral taxes, not in­clud­ing the tax it­self, pay­ing up to $1,000 for tax prepa­ra­tion. An­other third spend be­tween $1,000 and $5,000, and nearly a third spend more than $5,000.

Glow Images, Inc / Getty Images

Com­pa­nies ques­tioned in the sur­vey found bor­row­ing less dif­fi­cult in the first three months of 2018.

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