SBSC releases list of events impacting businesses in 2001

The Small Business Survival Committee, one of the nation’s leading national small business advocacy organizations, has released its list of developments that had the best and worst impact on small businesses in 2001.
First, the good:
1. Passage of the Bush Tax Cut Package. With 90 percent of business owners paying personal income taxes rather than corporate income taxes, the across the board reductions in income tax rates signed into law last year will improve the bottom line for many small businesses. A significant cut in the estate or “death tax” was also a huge positive about the plan.
2. Deep Interest Rate Cuts. The Federal Reserve cut short term interest rates from 6.5 percent to 1.75 percent in 2001, a whopping reduction. While access to credit is still a big issue for small businesses, lower rates should have a positive impact.
3. Sharply Lower Energy Prices. Gasoline prices have declined 25-30 percent over the past year. Combined with unseasonably warm weather late in the year, most small businesses should see their costs reduced significantly.
4. Moratorium on Internet Taxes. The information superhighway has become the fast lane to growth for many small businesses. Congress extended the moratorium on Internet taxes for another two years, keeping the road-blocks out of the way.
5. Scuttling the Kyoto Treaty. Putting Chicken Little back in her hen house, President Bush declined to impose the destructive regulations required by the Kyoto global climate treaty. On the basis of fanciful environmental theories, the treaty would have iced countless U.S businesses and jobs.
6. Settling the Microsoft Suit. With technology at the center of so many small businesses, the uncertainty about the future of Microsoft left many small businesses uncertain about the future. With the suit moving to settlement and the release of Windows XP, there’s a lot less to worry about.
7. Harry Potter & the Hobbits. Strong holiday movie openings signal that consumers are beginning to venture back out – a positive sign for the hard hit entertainment and hospitality industries.
8. Erased Ergonomic Regulations. Congress and President Bush repealed a host of onerous ergonomic rules and regulations issued at the last minute by former President Clinton. The rules would have cost some $125 billion to implement.
Tomorrow: The down side – a list of the developments that had the worst impact.