Welcome to Main Street Morning, The Washington Post’s daily collection of news affecting entrepreneurs, start-ups small businesses with a special focus on policy and government.

Here’s what’s affecting my small business, my clients and other entrepreneurs today.


  • Obama’s difficult first job scooping ice cream inspires his proposed new jobs bill for young people.
  • The White House steps up aid for financially ailing Puerto Rico.
  • A GOP bill seeks to block “midnight regulations.”

The Elections

  • Tennessee’s governor endorses Rubio.
  • Rubio is victorious in at least one election.
  • This is an analysis of everything that Donald Trump said in the debates, and what one writer learned.
  • Why Reddit is Bernie Sanders country, but Trump is catching up.
  • Twitter users call out Clinton for hypocrisy on racism, Wall Street and war.
  • A study finds that Conservatives prefer nouns.
  • Why big business is brushing off all that campaign trail rage.

The Economy

  • A bank’s survey finds that small business owners are more pessimistic about the national economy in 2016 than last year, yet remain hopeful about the future of their own businesses.
  • A report shows that 35 percent of oil companies could face bankruptcy.
  • U.S. jobless claims are up, but the trend points to a firming of the labor market.
  • Weaker holiday sales are now forcing retailers to shrink – and rethink the web.
  • Manufacturing in the Kansas City region falls to 2009 levels.
  • A new report says that “far too many teens” can’t find summer jobs.
  • More than 50 million Americans are living in economic distress, according to a study.


  • Here are five indisputable warning signs your company will fail.
  • An infographic reveals that business is not as much of a boys club as some may think.
  • The world’s two largest aerospace defense business are now run by women.
  • Hugo Boss’s CEO steps down after weak China and U.S. sales.
  • Mark Zuckerberg is not happy with the Facebook employees who defaced “Black Lives Matter.”
  • SeaWorld’s CEO admits that its company employees posed as animal activists to spy on opponents.


  • Yes, even you can be a “best-selling author” in just five minutes and for just $3.
  • This 12-year old is a proud business owner.

Customer Service

  • Why it appears that the great customer service after the recession was just a blip.


  • Volunteering in America is at its lowest level in over a decade.
  • This is the impact of technology on human resources…and what’s ahead.


  • The U.S. IPO market has almost completely dried up.
  • A public storage service raises another $17.5 million and unveils a strategy to become the next Blockbuster Video.



  • The chief marketing officer of YP (formerly Yellow Pages) explains how the company is handling change.
  • Zappos is campaigning to make Leap Day a federal holiday.


  • A new website is tracking start-ups’ falling valuations.



  • Reports are that Apple is working on an iPhone that even Apple couldn’t hack.
  • A shift is under way that will lead to widespread adoption of electric cars in the next decade.

Around the Country

  • How one American city is dealing with its significant budget woes.
  • In Alabama, this is proof that “buy America” works.
  • A Georgia business owner explains why he’s requiring all his employees to carry guns.

Around the World

Gene Marks owns the Marks Group, a Bala Cynwyd PA consulting firm that helps clients with customer relationship management. Follow Gene Marks and On Small Business on Twitter. ws we should know about? Email us here.