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Small Business Briefing

U.S. startups declined last year: study Add to ...

The latest news and information for entrepreneurs from across the web universe, brought to you by the Report on Small Business team. Follow us on Twitter @GlobeSmallBiz. Download our app here.

Still, startup activity among highest levels in 16 years

The rate of new business creation in the U.S. dropped last year, but is still doing better than in the years leading up to the Great Recession, according to a new study by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.

Its latest annual "Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurial Activity" found that the percentage of U.S. adults who created a business every month dropped 5.9 per cent from 2010. Even so, that was still among the highest levels of entrepreneurship in the past 16 years, it found.

But many entrepreneurs are flying solo rather than adding employees, the study found.

"The Great Recession has pushed many individuals into business ownership due to high unemployment rates," said Robert Litan, Kauffman's vice-president of research and policy, in a statement. "However, economic uncertainty likely has made them more cautious, and they prefer to start sole proprietorships rather than more costly employer firms."

About 543,000 businesses were created in each month of the year.Growth in entrepreneurship was highest among those aged 45 to 54; those aged 20 to 34 also showed a slight rise, but there were drops among those aged 35 to 44, and 55 to 64, the study found.

Among other findings, entrepreneurial activity fell slightly among both men and women, though men still started businesses at twice the rate of women. As well, among the 15 largest metropolitan areas, Los Angeles had the highest rate of entrepreneurial activity, while Chicago and Detroit had the lowest.

For an infographic of the study, click here. For a guest post by Mr. Litan in Forbes, click here.

Will U.S. Senate toughen entrepreneur bill?

The JOBS Act, designed to make it easier for entrepreneurs to raise money, passed the U.S. House of Representatives a couple of weeks ago, is having a tougher time in the Senate. It is facing opposition from a variety of forces, including the chairwoman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, pension funds and some lobbying groups that are worrying about, among other things, relaxing safeguards on investment fraud, says this piece in The New York Times. There's a Senate amendment that differs from the bill passed by the House, but it's not clear whether the Democrats will be able to attract enough Republican votes, the Times piece says. The bill is scheduled for several procedural votes today and could come to a final vote as early as this week, the Times reports.


$100,000 Small Business Challenge

Could you use some money to move your business ahead? Telus and The Globe and Mail have launched The Challenge, the second annual contest for Canadian small business owners to present their biggest business challenge for an opportunity to win a $100,000 grant from Telus. Explain the biggest challenge your business is currently facing, and how such a grant would help overcome it. For more information on the contest, details and submission, click here.

Small Business Summit

Join speakers and fellow entrepreneurs at the next Small Business Summit being held in Calgary on April 25. The summit, brought to you by The Globe and Mail Report on Small Business in conjunction with Achilles Media, is a one-day event for entrepreneurs filled with strategies, sessions and presentations that will offer essential insights to growing your business. For more information, click here.


Did you know this invention is Canadian?

Check out The Innovators, a monthly multimedia feature on great Canadian inventions. First up: the walkie-talkie.


Are you an inventor or an entrepreneur?

That's a question that John Warrillow asked in a November, 2010, column. From the outside, an inventor looks a lot like an entrepreneur, he wrote. You turn from one to the other, he added, once you have sold one of your mousetraps.

Join The Globe’s Small Business LinkedIn group to network with other entrepreneurs and to discuss topical issues: http://linkd.in/jWWdzT

Our free weekly newsletter is now available. Every Friday a team of editors selects the top picks from our blog posts, features, multimedia and columnists, and delivers them to your inbox. If you have registered for The Globe's website, you can sign up here. Click on the Small Business Briefing checkbox and hit 'save changes.' If you need to register for the site, click here.

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