Already in 2019, small business CEOs are experiencing headwinds from seemingly all sides. Entering the year, the economy was already sputtering, with one third of small business CEOs expected economic conditions to worsen throughout the year according a poll by WSJ/Vistage Small Business. The National Federation of Independent Business found similar results, reporting a four month decline in small business optimism.
Compounding this bearishness among small business CEOs is the recent government shutdown, now entering it's 25th day. One crucial aspect of a functioning government for small businesses is the SBA loan program.
Since the start of the year, SBA offices across the nation have been shuttered. More than 300 loans per day are being held up because of the shutdown, reports the Washington Post, and even more could be delayed due to backlog because of the shutdown.
Through the 7(a) 504 loan program, nearly $200 million dollars is dispensed from the SBA into the coffers of small businesses every day—money that is being held up.
In short, the shutdown is costing small businesses money. And also time. Small businesses should also watch out for closing date agreements that might be affected by the shutdown.
Linda McMahon, head of the SBA, met with Senator Marco Rubio about steps to jump-start lending once the government reopens, but that day might be far off. And as capital dries up from the SBA, confidence in the government dwindles, merchants require repayment, and small businesses are forced to cover their financing in whatever way possible.