In 2010, Rate Hikes Will Cost Small Businesses $420 MillionBy Channel Insider Staff | Print
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Cost-conscious businesses are feeling the credit crunch on all levels, but particularly in regard to credit card rates, which remain higher for businesses than consumers.BillShrink, a search engine that compares millions of product and service options against consumer needs, released the results of a study showing small business owners could end up paying more than $420 million in incremental finance charges this year because their cards aren't getting the same protections as consumer cards.
The company surveyed more than 300 small businesses, finding many business card issuers have raised rates upward of 15 percent and some cardholders saw rates increase 27 percent in the last three months. The survey found more than a quarter of all small businesses carry an average balance of $14,572, and smaller businesses (those with under $600,000 in monthly revenue) are more than twice as likely to carry a balance versus paying it off in full each month. Peter Pham, CEO of BillShrink, said part of the problem is that cash-strapped businesses are charging more on their credit cards as business lending continues to decrease.