The Washington Post

Get started ‘On’ Apr. 23: Government fund boosts local lending, men’s suits ranked worst business to start

Our daily blend of the latest news, trends and tips for the small business community.

What’s going ‘on’:

Government fund spurring local lending: Banks participating in the Small Business Lending Fund upped lending to mom-and-pop operations $4.8 billion over baseline levels during the fourth quarter. The fund, part of the Small Business Job Act of 2010, doled out more than $4 billion to 332 community banks, credit unions and community development financial institutions across the country.

Men’s suits, knitting mills among worst new firms to start: Opening a men’s suits, coats and trousers manufacturing firm is by far the worst entrepreneurial idea of the year, according to new rankings published by IBISWorld, which expects three out of four such firms to fold before the end of 2012. Not far behind are knitting mills, costume/uniform makers and photofinishing firms.

House GOP women key in pushing tax cut bill: Several female lawmakers played a leading role in helping Republicans push through a small business tax cut measure last week, according to The Hill. Reps. Cathy McMorris-Rodgers (R-Wash.) and Renee Ellmers (R-N.C.) were deployed to both promotoe the party’s talking points and highlight the benefits of the tax cut for women-owned companies.

Keep an eye ‘on’:

SBA size standards changing the game for regional firms: The Small Business Administration has been revamping the size standards companies must meet to receive work set aside for small business, which has given a much needed boost to firms like environmental and energy consulting contractor SC&A in Vienna.

Helpful advice ‘on’:

How to pick the right daily deals for your firm (OSB)

How to get started in social advertising (Entrepreneur)

How to be consistent in your branding (Open Forum)

How to protect your online reputation (Fox Business)

How to take your firm onto Pinterest (Money and Risk)

J.D. Harrison covers startups, small business and entrepreneurship, with a focus on public policy, and he runs the On Small Business blog.

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