NEW YORK (MainStreet) - What's happening in small business today?
1. Credit unions wants your business. Federal laws currently restrain credit unions from grabbing more small-business lending, but legislation in both the House and the Senate is being considered to alleviate those restrictions, according to The Charlotte Observer.
While the issue isn't new, it's getting a hard look by politicians this year in an effort to ease capital restrictions on the country's smallest companies. Currently, federal law states that credit unions must cap their small-business lending to 12.25% of their assets. The bills in both chambers seek to increase that cap to 27.5%, the Observersays.
According to the Observer, credit unions collectively hold just 6% of all small-business loans.Banks, of course, oppose lifting the cap, pointing to the advantage credit unions have by not paying taxes and not being subject to strict regulations, they say. 2. Walmart announces 10 finalists for its Get on the Shelf contest. Of more than 4,000 entries, Wal-Mart Stores (WMT) announced 10 finalists to its Get on the Shelf contest, which aims to get products from three lucky winners sold through Walmart.com and one grand prize winner will get the chance to have their product carried in select stores. More than 1 million votes were cast, Walmart said Thursday in a press release. The 10 finalists had products ranging from acne solutions to T-shirts to eyeglass repair kits to Kosher salt made by disabled veterans. The final round of voting will run Wednesday through April 24. "The top 10 finalists represent the smart and inspirational products that Walmart customers want to see on the shelf online and in their local stores," said Chris Bolte, vice president of @WalmartLabs. "We have been inspired by the creativity and passion of the contestants as they promote their products through traditional media, social marketing and personal networks. We look forward to the next round of voting where the winners will be decided by the American public." 3. Learn how to hire an intern. The summer is coming and that means lots of free potential labor from college students on break. The National Federation of Independent Business is hosting a free webinar Wednesday at noon EST to discuss how to create an internship program at your small business, which can ultimately build a "fertile recruiting ground" for your company. -- Written by Laurie Kulikowski in New York. To contact Laurie Kulikowski, send an email to: Laurie.Kulikowski@thestreet.com. To follow Laurie Kulikowski on Twitter, go to: http://twitter.com/#!/LKulikowski >To submit a news tip, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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