Our daily blend of the latest news, trends and tips for the small business community.
What’s going ‘on’:
Senate pushes small business funding bills: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Tuesday announced that the chamber would move forward on bills “to spur small-business growth” by adjusting the rules that govern how companies raise capital. The White House has supported such measures and the House already passed similar legislation that would allow businesses to use online crowdfunding services to connect with investors.
Home prices plummet further: The nation’s home prices have fallen to their lowest level since 2002, according to a private report, casting a troubling shadow over what has otherwise been a brightening economic recovery. The December S&P/Case-Shiller index of property values fell 4 percent from a year earlier, after decreasing 3.9 percent in November.
Banks facing less trouble to end the year: The number of banks at risk of failing fell 1.8 percent in the fourth quarter, marking the third straight quarterly decline, according to a government report issued Tuesday. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. also said banks posted the largest loan balance increase in four years.
Keep an eye ‘on’:
New battle begins over the rights to “Entrepreneur”: Entrepreneur Media Incorporated, which owns both Entrepreneur magazine and Entrepreneur.com, has reportedly filed a suit against Nick Vaidya for using the (capitalized) e-word in his CEO Entrepreneurship Magazine’s title. This is not the first time EMI has aggresively defended its rights to the word in media titles, having previously taken legal action against EntrepreneurBooks.com.
High gas prices weighing heavily on mobile businesses:While no motorists are pleased by the rising cost of gas, the toll is especially heavy on small business owners who depend on their cars and trucks to bring goods and services to consumers. Enterprises like carpet cleaners, food truck drivers, cabbies, gardeners and exterminators are among those whose profits go down as the price at the pump goes up.
Helpful advice ‘on’:
How to engage customers online with gamification (OSB)
How to discipline your unproductive employees (Buzz)
How to recruit talent for your start-up (Open Forum)
How to write off your vehicle for tax purposes (Entrepreneur)