Further, in the SSBF
(Capital IQ, Compustat) samples, the mean debt-to-equity ratios are 3.04 (3.15, 2.43).
In addition to small businesses' increasing reliance on mortgages and larger banks, there is evidence (from SSBF
data) of a significant increase in the past decade in their reliance on nontraditional credit, such as loans from nonbank institutions and business credit cards.
Section III summarizes the 2003 SSBF
data used in estimation.
Regarding balances, the SSBF
shows that among the 46.5 percent of small businesses using personal cards, the average monthly transaction total on personal cards is $2,161.
He uses data from the 1987, 1993, 1998, and 2003 Surveys of Small Business Finances (SSBF
(3) This paper's main analysis uses SSBF
2003 data, and it uses SSBF
1998 data as a robustness check.
The 2003 SSBF
did not collect information on the value of prior period sales, but only whether sales revenues had increased, decreased, or remained the same since the prior period.
Within the modest share of growing firms, the SSBF
data do not tell us by how much the firms grew.
survey makes it ideal for this approach because it asks the open-ended question: "What is the single most important problem facing your business today"?
The figure (on the next page) again uses the Fed's 1993, 1998, and 2003 SSBFs
. It shows the percentage of small businesses that use community banks (less than $1 billion in real total assets) and that use non-community banks.
dataset is interesting because it is a large sample with potentially widely varying firm types and ages (e.g., start-ups as well as 50-year-old firms) and it contains many questions about the firms (e.g., "Is the firm a family firm?").