By Karen Axelton
Where are small business owners turning for financing these days? If you think entrepreneurs have given up on obtaining bank loans, think again. More than two-thirds (68 percent) of entrepreneurs seeking capital for their businesses in the next six months say they will pursue bank loans, according to a survey from Pepperdine University’s Graziadio School of Business and Management, conducted in partnership with Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp.
The next most popular source of financing was a business credit card, cited by 40 percent; followed by credit unions or Community Development Financial Institutions Funds (CDFIs), cited by 36 percent.
The First Quarter 2012 Private Capital Access Index study found that business owners with revenue of over $5 million were more optimistic about successfully raising financing from banks than were smaller businesses. Ranked on a scale from 0-4, larger businesses’ confidence in their ability to get a bank loan averaged 2.3, while businesses with sales under $5 million ranked their confidence level at 1.4.
The numbers show significantly higher interest in bank loans compared to the prior survey findings released in December 2011. At that time, just 37 percent of respondents had actually tried to get bank loans in the past 12 months. In contrast, nearly half of respondents (49 percent) had used credit cards. Of course, it remains to be seen if the 67 percent of entrepreneurs planning to apply for bank loans actually follow through. However, the growth in intention alone is a positive indicator.
“As business owners secure more traditional sources of financing and rely less on their own personal resources,“ said Dr. John Paglia, director of the Pepperdine Private Capital Markets Project and associate professor of finance at Pepperdine University’s Graziadio School of Business and Management, “they will have more discretionary money to spend thereby stimulating our economy.”
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