March 17, 2021


U.S. Small Businesses Are Holding Off Debt Apocalypse, for Now

Photographer: Bryan Tarnowski/Bloomberg

Government relief programs and lenders’ forbearance have kept U.S. small businesses from defaulting on their debt en masse as revenue slumped during the pandemic crisis, according to a new analysis.

Among small firms nationwide, 18.3% of business payments were past due in January, a modest increase from 17.7% in February 2020, the Urban Institute said in a report using Dun & Bradstreet data. Somewhat more affected were two big cities on the coasts, New York and San Francisco, which saw increases of 2.5 and 4.3 percentage points, respectively.

Small Business Stands Firm

Delinquent payments

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