Just when things seemed to be looking up for the economy, a new report released Tuesday by the National Federation of Independent Business reveals small businesses across the country are struggling to break even. The report goes also says bleak prospects have forced many small businesses to hold off hiring new employees, as they struggle to maintain their current work force.
Small businesses employ about half of the American workforce, an important fact when you consider the potential chain reaction of this news: no new hiring means no new spending, no new spending could spell a longer, deeper recession.
Stocks surged on Monday, following an announcement from the National Bureau for Economic Research that the recession has been over since June of 2009.
You can be forgiven if this comes as news to you — it's come as news to many people, not least the small business owners who've been struggling to survive in an economy where credit is tight, health care costs are high, and consumers and investors remain skittish.
November is the time of year when most workers can elect to change their participation in the health care coverage offered by their employer. As health care costs continue to rise, it's a decision that's more important than ever before.
We talk with two small business owners, Marva Allen, co-owner of Hue Man Bookstore in Harlem; and Walt Rowen, owner of Susquehanna Glass in Columbia, Pa., about how their employees are getting squeezed by changes beyond their control in the plans that they offer. We also talk with Takeaway contributor Beth Kobliner for advice on what people should consider when getting a plan at work.
With so much talk about the ailing economy, it may not seem like the best time to start a new business, but in our weekly work segment we look at some reasons why it might make sense to do it now. Takeaway contributor Beth Kobliner, author of Get a Financial Life: Personal Finance In Your Twenties and Thirties, joins us with two entrepreneurs who are doing well in the recession: Marva Allen, co-owner of Hue-Man Bookstore in New York, and Jo-Ellen Stammen, who runs her own design business. ...(continue reading)
What they see is [that] bigger, more established competitors may be having to cut back and lay off people, maybe not having that great service they used to have. So a new company could start, a small business could start, and really have that edge.
—Financial author Beth Kobliner on why starting a business during a recession can be a good idea