Small-business owners are generally satisfied with their access to funding and about one in five plans to apply for a loan in 2013, according to a new survey from Bank of America (BAC).
The Bank of America Small Business Owner Report, released Wednesday, showed that while small-business owners feel that they have adequate access to loans, they are in need of financial advice; only 30% said that they feel very confident in their financial acumen.
Sixty-seven percent of those surveyed said they have access to capital, and 79% of those who said they've applied for a loan in the last two years said they were approved. Nineteen percent said they plan to apply for a loan this year, and when asked how they would use the new loan, 43% said they would invest in new equipment, the most common response. Forty percent said they would use the loan to market their businesses and 34% said they would expand their operations; 26% said they would hire more employees.
Small-business owners seeking financial guidance turn first to the person who keeps their books, the survey showed. Seventy-three percent cited their accountant or bookkeeper as the leading provider of financial advice, and the next two most common responses were other small-business owners, with 55%, and family and friends, with 54%. Forty percent said their banker is their main source of financial advice, while 36% said that it was their lawyer.
Small-business owners are generally optimistic about the future of their businesses, the survey found. Thirty-one percent said they plan to hire more employees in the next year, and just over half say they expect their revenue to increase in that time.
Braun Research conducted the survey in March, polling 1,300 owners of businesses with annual revenue between $100,000 and $5 million and fewer than 100 employees.