Small business financing up in January

The Thomson Reuters/PayNet Small Business Lending Index climbed 18% in January compared with January 2011, reaching 100.8. The increase, the 18th consecutive double-digit gain, suggests small businesses are stronger than previously thought. However, the index was higher in December, as companies hurried to finish business before year-end. “It’s like a lukewarm cup of coffee — it’s not bad, but it’s not great,” PayNet President William Phelan said. “We’re all looking for really strong growth, and I’m not sure when we are going to get it.” Reuters (3/1)