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SBA announces emergency funding for small businesses
Mon May 18, 2009 10:00pm EDT

By Jon Cook

WASHINGTON, DC (Reuters) – The U.S. Small Business Association today announced a new emergency bridge-lending program geared toward helping struggling small businesses ride out the current recession.

Calling it another “tool to our toolbox” SBA head Karen Mills said the new American Recovery Capital (ARC) program will offer “viable” small businesses temporary six-month loans of up to $35,000.

[ . . . ]

The interest-free loan must be used within six months and borrowers have up to six years to repay it. The only other stipulation is that it cannot be used to pay any previous SBA-backed loan the business may have outstanding.

[ . . . ]

Last month the SBA also dropped fees and broadened eligibility criteria for businesses applying for funding, opening the doors for an additional 70,000 companies to apply for its 7(a) and 504 lending programs.

Mills said since the Recovery Act about 10,000 new loans had been approved, causing a 25 percent boost in the SBA’s average weekly loan volumes. Since October the SBA had seen loan volumes fall by more than half.

[ . . . ]

Democratic Senator Mary Landrieu, who co-chairs the Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, wants to make sure entrepreneurs like Justice are more supported by the government and banks.

Currently just 25 percent of the roughly 8,000 banks in the U.S. participate in the SBA’s lending programs and Landrieu, who worked closely with Mills to get more money for small businesses into the Recovery Act, would like to see that number be much higher.

“I’d like to get that up to 100 percent,” she confessed. “I would like to think that no one in America, who has a viable idea for a business and a decent plan and a work ethic, would ever be turned away.

“That we become a country wanting to support entrepreneurs, as opposed to making it difficult.”

[ etc ]

http://www.reuters.com/article/smallBusinessNews/idUSTRE54I0CJ20090519

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EXHIBITORS

RECon provides opportunities to showcase your company to the largest gathering of shopping center professionals in the world.

Come visit our mall. This extraordinary deal making opportunity features 1,300+ of the world’s leading developers, retailers, brokers and financial institutions who come together once a year to meet, greet and conduct business. Encompassing over 1.5 million square feet (140,000 square meters) of exhibit space, it is estimated that over 25% of the industry’s transactions occur over this three day event.

Exhibitors Include:

  • Shopping Center Owners/Developers
  • Retailers
  • Public Sector Companies
  • Brokers
  • Financial Institutions

http://www.icsc.org/2009SC/exhibitor.php

ReCon – The Global Retail Real Estate Convention –

ICSC – International Council of Shopping Centers

May 17 – 20, Las Vegas, Nevada

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http://www.nationalsmallbusinessweek.com/

National Small Business Week

National Small Business Week 2009

May 17-19, 2009

Mandarin Oriental Hotel and Conference Center

1330 Maryland Avenue, S.W.
Washington, DC
20024
(202) 554-8588

2009 Schedule of Events

Keynote by Karen G. Mills
The Future of Small Businesses and Vision of the SBA
(Open to all Small Business Week Attendees)
Monday, May 18, 10:00 AM to 10:45AM
Speaker: Lisa Gersh
Oriental Ballroom

Financial Forum: Strengthening Small Businesses in a Challenging Economy
Monday, May 18, 11:00 AM to 12:15 PM
Moderator: Joseph Jordan
Speaker: Raghav Lal, Eric Zarnikow, Kenan Pankau, Judith Roussel
Sponsored by Visa
Oriental Ballroom

Town Hall Meeting: Successful Business Strategies in a Down Economy
Monday, May 18, 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Hosted by: JJ Ramberg
Speaker: Penny Pickett, Toby McGrath, Grady Hedgespeth, Joseph Jordan, Matt Friedman
Sponsored by IBM
Oriental Ballroom

Innovation Forum: Technology – Our Competitive Edge
Monday, May 18, 3:30 PM to 4:45 PM
Moderator: Sara Lipscomb,
Speakers: Nancy Gioia, Andrew Kruse, Stacey Wueste, Steve Quane
Sponsored by HP
Oriental Ballroom

Social Media Forum: Social Media, Transforming the Way You Do Business
Tuesday, May 19, 11:00 AM to 12:15 PM
Speakers: Alex Craddock, John Jantsch, Rieva Lesonsky, Peter Greenberger, Adam Connor
Moderator: Brian Moran
Sponsored by Visa
Grand Ballroom

http://www.nationalsmallbusinessweek.com/index.php?pID=29

(My Note – these are the meat and potatoes offered – the other events scheduled are various awards and receptions. It seems it is mostly an awards show rather than a can-do conference.)

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Davos, Switzerland – World Economic Forum

This is a can-do conference – and the website is filled with information – the events were webcast and very specific to getting the job done. Even though it is not focused on small business, it has more information for small business than our national business week efforts by the small business administration.

http://www.weforum.org/en/index.htm

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Global Competitiveness Report 2008-2009 was released on 8 October 2008

Through its reports and activities the Global Competitiveness Network of the World Economic Forum identifies impediments to growth and thereby helps stimulate the development of relevant strategies to achieve sustained economic progress. The GCN team works with leading academics worldwide to ensure latest thinking and research on global competitiveness are incorporated into its reports.

These reports range from global coverage, such as The Global Competitiveness Report, to the regional and topical,such as the Gender Gap study, the Arab World Competitiveness Report and theThe Global Information Technology Report.

http://www.weforum.org/en/initiatives/gcp/index.htm

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My Note –

I just thought this was interesting – the approach is practical and shows a different kind of willingness to apply workable solutions in financial methods –

http://www.aft.gouv.fr/aft_en_21/agence_france_tresor_22/partners_213/banque_france_216/the_government_787.html

AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE GOVERNMENT AND THE BANQUE DE FRANCE

The revised agreement pertaining to the Government’s Treasury Account with the Banque de France went into effect on May 1, 2002, following a thorough reworking of the wording of the earlier agreement, an effort that required more than one year of concerted action with the French central bank.

The latest agreement updates and supplements the 1994 agreement. It specifies the instruments used by the Banque de France to ensure that its client – the French Government – can keep realtime track of the credit, debit and market transactions in its account, a series of movements that involve more than 17 billion euros a day. It also integrates requirements related to the French Parliament’s approval of the first Debt and Treasury Management Program, presented in the Initial Budget Act for 2002. In particular, the Program called for use of the enhanced visibility offered by the Banque de France (on the time at which various transactions impacting the Government’s Account are debited and credited) to reduce the average unused account balance.

It also implements new security regulations designed to prevent the Government’s account balance from deteriorating after 4:15 pm due to the late entry of certain emergency transactions. This system allows AFT to reduce its contingency balance earlier in the day under satisfactory market conditions (i.e. generally before 5 pm, when most eligible counterparties still offer attractive short-term investment rates).

This improved visibility has been made possible by a set of new banking services that supplement existing ones. They are based on three key precepts: information, security and financial neutrality.

• In terms of information, the AFT requires information on those transactions initiated by the Banque de France that cannot be signalled in advance by government accountants (transactions involving African central banks or the IMF). The new agreement provides a specific framework for such transactions.

• In terms of security, the Banque de France undertakes to provide the following services:

– Uninterrupted availability of accountkeeping applications, under the terms and conditions specified in the agreement. For example, the consolidated status of treasury transactions is updated every 30 minutes at least. The new agreement also stipulates that the Treasury be swiftly informed of the occurrence of any technical incidents that affect the performance or availability of these applications.

– Compliance with standard scheduling for debiting and crediting Treasury transactions. This new and particularly important service is designed to offer the Treasury adequate visibility over its cash position, which is especially critical for timing short-term cash investments. Schedules for entering transactions in the Government account, in accordance with reporting deadlines for government accountants, were identified and streamlined where possible. In particular, the Banque de France revised its procedures for entering the principal credits from the Système interbancaire de télécompensation (SIT – interbank remote clearing system), and for processing cash transactions and payment orders for foreign accounts, bringing them forward to 4:15 pm at the latest.

– Implementation of an emergency back-up procedure in the event of an incident that affects the telecommunications link between the AFT and the Banque de France.

• The financial neutrality of the Treasury concerns two issues:

– Same-day execution of credit and debit transactions involving certain international organizations, in particular the IMF

– Compensation for investment opportunities that are missed because the Banque de France is unable to honor its contractual commitments. This clause refers primarily to incidents (such as the unavailability of Banque de France software applications at the end of the day) that disrupt the flow of information to the Treasury or prohibit the entry of transactions.

Incidents of this type prevent the AFT from ascertaining the Government’s account balance, leading to a forced halt in cash investments and money market borrowings, or to the investment of available surpluses later, and hence at much lower rates.

Overall, the new agreement with the Banque de France improves the quality of banking services provided to the Government, which enables the Treasury to reduce the amount of funds that lie dormant at the end of the day. The change should also enable the AFT to manage cash in the Government’s account with greater precision, in the taxpayer’s best interest.

Updated on 01 Nov 04

http://www.aft.gouv.fr/aft_en_21/agence_france_tresor_22/partners_213/banque_france_216/the_government_787.html

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My Opinion –

Some of the crap we put up with in America concerning business, banking, small business and similar financial areas are a matter of logistics, but some of it is being caused by a leftover unwillingness to have transparency, unwillingness to change, unwillingness to approach hard problems with the systems and develop workable solutions then enact them, and an overall attitude of exclusion rather than inclusion.

These have continued to endure despite what any Republican says – as their efforts are to maintain the same ship, go back to the same old ways they had set up as soon as nobody is looking – and despite what any Democrat says – as their efforts fall short of cooperative workmanship on enacting solutions from those who still hold the reins of power in the business community, banking, and government agencies that serve them.

– cricketdiane, 05-19-09

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http://newyorkcity2005.web.infoseek.co.jp/information/maps/timessquare-dtl.html

A Nifty Map of  Times’ Square – includes a bunch of stores, theaters, restaurants and hotels – very cool