There’s been a lot of talk about the economic rebound in the United States, but there’s also been a lot of speculation about how long we can expect the good times to last. If the current numbers from the Thomson Reuters / PayNet Small Business Lending Index are any indication, perhaps the naysaying chatter was preemptive.
According to Reuters.com, U.S. small businesses are borrowing more than they have in the last seven and a half years. The index shows that as of September, the rate is 125.4, up from 118.5 in August. But what do these numbers actually mean?
In short, they indicate confidence in the future of the economy. After all, what savvy small-business owner is going to borrow money if they expect to fall on hard times soon?
Let’s take a look at how small-business owners can use the current economic climate like wind in their sails to continue to invest in their companies.
When the Coast Is Clear, Celebrate Accordingly
As a small-business owner, you may already be aware of just how prevalent businesses like yours are in this country. The Freelancers Union estimates that as many as 54 million Americans do independent work and so are considered small businesses by the IRS. And a considerable number of them run what most people would recognize as small businesses. When you look at those numbers (courtesy of this Business Insider infographic), that prevalence easily translates into economic strength:
- There are 28 million small businesses currently operating in the United States.
- Of that number, 22 million are self-employed.
- 75 percent of all U.S. businesses are non-employer businesses (i.e., businesses with $1,000 in annual receipts and that are subject to federal income taxes).
- About 120 million workers – over half of the entire population – work in a small business.
- Non-employer businesses generated $989.6 billion in revenue in 2011.
- 65 percent of all new jobs since 1995 have been created by small businesses.
While these stats should embolden you, it’s wise to keep in mind the lessons from the recession, which is just barely in our rearview mirrors. Indicators point to a bright and prosperous future for small businesses, but you never can predict when an accident might sink all your hard work.
Looking Ahead: What to Do When Rough Waters Hit
Part of securing your business’s future means investing in the financial safety nets that can keep you afloat if you find troubled waters. Remember, it doesn’t necessarily take a recession’s gale to knock you off course. A lawsuit or property loss could drain your bank account just the same (or worse).
So while prospects look promising, perhaps now is a good time to invest in insurance. The appropriate policies can pay for…
- Legal expenses when you’re sued over bodily injuries that happen on your property, professional mistakes, advertising injuries, and more.
- The replacement or repair of lost or damaged property (e.g., your storefront, office space, computers, inventory, and more).
- Medical expenses for your employees when they are injured at work.
- Business interruption expenses when a disaster forces your business to temporarily shut down, allowing you to make loan payments and payroll, even when you’re not generating income.
To learn more about how to get affordable insurance coverage, check out our blog series on insurance saving tips. And when you’re ready to invest in your business’s future, be sure to talk to an insureon agent who can handpick policies for your business’s specific risks, needs, and budget.