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Created on September 11, 2014
Cross blog post by John Thompson, Director, U.S. Census Bureau
Did you know that there are 27.1 million non-farm businesses in America? The U.S. Census Bureau’s Survey of Business Owners and Self-Employed Persons provides the only comprehensive source of statistics about business ownership in the U.S. The Census Bureau conducts the SBO every five years. This is the first time the SBO is being conducted primarily online.
If you own a business, such as a salon or a landscaping company, you may be one of the one million Americans selected to participate in the Survey of Business Owners. Even if you do not have employees other than yourself, we want to hear from you. By participating online now, you can help provide consistent, comparable, and comprehensive statistics on U.S. business performance. For example, the 2007 SBO showed us that 5.9 percent of responding firms reported income from e-commerce – an important insight into how the Internet is shaping our economy.
Created on September 9, 2014
This post originally appeared on the Tradeology, the ITA Blog
Kenneth R. Mouradian is the Director of the International Trade Administration’s Orlando U.S. Export Assistance Center.
With the United States continuing its focus on doing business in Africa, we are working to connect more U.S. companies with every opportunity available on the continent.
From the recent U.S.-Africa Business Forum to the upcoming DISCOVER GLOBAL MARKETS: Sub-Saharan Africa event in Atlanta, the United States has made it a priority to support U.S. companies doing business in Africa.
Created on September 9, 2014
Did you know that in the wake of a disaster, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) provides low-interest disaster loans to homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes and private, nonprofit organizations? In the aftermath of hurricanes, floods, earthquakes, wildfires, tornadoes and other disasters, SBA is the primary source of money from the federal government for long-term recovery assistance.
Am I eligible?
SBA’s Disaster Loan Program is not exclusively for small businesses. These low-interest, long-term loans are available for damage to private property owned by individuals, families, businesses of all sizes and private nonprofits not fully covered by insurance.
While property owners usually have some insurance coverage, often it does not cover all losses or even the type of hazard that caused the damage. And that’s where a disaster loan comes into play.
What can I use the loan for?
There are actually a few different types of disaster loans available. SBA can provide up to $2 million in disaster assistance for businesses. This includes loans to cover physical damage and economic injury losses. Some applicants will qualify for both an economic injury loan and a physical disaster loan. Meanwhile, the dollar limit for the combined loans is $2 million.
Created on September 5, 2014, 2014
Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade Stefan M. Selig speaking with Elizabeth Littlefield, President & CEO of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation at the U.S.-Africa Business Forum.
Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Commerce and Bloomberg Philanthropies co-hosted an event showing that Africa is one of the world’s next great sources of economic growth.
The first-ever U.S.-Africa Business Forum brought together American and African business leaders with the heads of nearly 50 African nations to exchange ideas and create partnerships that will promote trade, accelerate job growth, and encourage investment.
And this was not just an academic discussion. We built the kind of relationships that will help usher in a new level of success for the growing economies and businesses of Africa, as well as spur real gains for U.S. companies.
Created on September 2, 2014
September is National Preparedness Month.
There are steps you can take to safeguard your company and secure your physical assets.
Review Insurance Coverage: Inadequate insurance coverage can lead to major financial loss if your business is damaged, destroyed or simply interrupted for a period of time. Insurance policies vary, so check with your agent or provider about things such as physical losses, flood coverage and business interruption. Understand what your policy covers and what it does not. Ask about any deductibles, if applicable. Consider how you will pay creditors and employees. You should also plan how you will provide for your own income. Finally, find out what records your insurance provider will want to see after an emergency and store them in a safe place.
Prepare for Utility Disruptions: Businesses are often dependent on electricity, gas, telecommunications, sewer and other utilities. Plan ahead for extended disruptions during and after a disaster. Carefully examine which utilities are vital to your business’s day-to-day operation. Speak with service providers about potential alternatives and identify back-up options such as portable generators to power the vital aspects of your business in an emergency.