SBA study stresses economic role of N.H. small businesses

Not that it’s news to most people, New Hampshire’s small businesses are an essential part of the state’s economic well-being, according to data released March 14 by the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy.The office released Small Business Profiles for each state, including New Hampshire. The profiles use the most recent data available to provide details about small-business employment, business startups and closings, bank lending, business ownership by minorities, women, and veterans, and firm and employment change by major industry and firm size.According to the New Hampshire data, small businesses account for a significant share of the state’s economic production and hiringThere were 135,716 small businesses in New Hampshire in 2008, when the most recent data were available. Of these, 31,146 were employers and they accounted for 54 percent of private sector jobs in the state. Small firms made up 96.3 percent of the state’s employers.Also, according to the data, New Hampshire’s real gross state product increased by 1.8 percent and private-sector employment decreased by 4.4 percent in 2009. By comparison, real GDP in the United States grew 0.7 percent and private sector employment declined by 5.5 percent.The data also show that the number of both women and minority business owners has grown in the Granite State. In particular, minority-owned businesses totaled 4,855 in 2007 — an increase of 42.8% over 2002.For more information and a complete copy of the state and territory small business profiles, visit the Office of Advocacy website at — JEFF FEINGOLD/NEW HAMPSHIRE BUSINESS REVIEW

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