This week Small Business Administration chief Karen Mills gave America’s top banks a pat on the back for boosting their lending to small businesses over the last 12 months, while separate data showed that funding for the most needy small businesses actually contracted.
In a blog posted on the SBA’s official website, Mills trumpeted that the U.S.’s top 13 biggest banks have increased loans to small businesses by a whopping $11 billion since last September as part of a commitment to boost lending by $20 billion by the end of 2014.
“The continued success of this commitment serves as an important example of what is possible when the public and private sectors work together to assist America’s small business owners and entrepreneurs,” Mills wrote.
While not disputing Mills’s arithmetic, small business funding expert Ami Kassar said the $11-billion figure “does not represent Main Street lending whatsoever.”
Kassar, whose Philadelphia-based company MultiFunding LLC helps small businesses get their hands on capital from a variety of lenders, said the SBA number covers loans made to businesses with as much as $20 million in revenue who tend to borrow in excess of $1 million.