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Wells Fargo Increases Small Business Lending by 18 Percent; Remains Nation’s Top Small Business Lender For 5th Consecutive Year


Wells Fargo continues to lead small business lending for loans under $100,000, according to recent government data

The small business lending market totaled $126 billion in 2006, with Wells Fargo holding steady as America’s number one small business lender for the fifth consecutive year. With an 18 percent year-over-year increase in its 2006 lending, Wells Fargo extended $21 billion to small business owners nationwide (in loans under $100,000), according to the 2006 Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) data. CRA data measures small business lending based on loan originations, providing the industry’s most comprehensive set of small business lending figures.

“CRA data is an important barometer for small business lending because it tracks loan originations, which represent the total amount extended to a business,” said Marc Bernstein, EVP and head of small business lending for Wells Fargo. “Wells Fargo’s 18 percent increase in year-over-year lending affirms our ongoing commitment to small businesses. With an average loan size of just under $26,000, Wells Fargo is the leading small business lender for loans under $100,000, extending more than 820,000 loans nationwide. With 95 percent of all small businesses generating less than $2 million in annual revenues, tracking loans under $100,000 is a key measure of how financial institutions are meeting the capital needs of small business owners.

“As a small business owner, the continued support of financial institutions is critical to my success,” said Lisa Johnson, founder and CEO of Chicago-based Gourmet Kitchens. “Since we started over 18 years ago, obtaining credit has helped us grow from a company of seven employees into a multimillion dollar business with over 300 employees. Growing a business requires all types of assistance; you need a lot of support and a bank that can be there as your capital needs change"

Wells Fargo was also the #1 lender to small businesses in Low- and Moderate-Income neighborhoods (for loans under $100,000), with over 160,000 loans totaling more than $4.3 billion dollars.

Wells Fargo ranked #1 for loans under $100,000 in 18 states: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Iowa, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.

“As America’s leading small business lender, we continually look for ways to understand and meet all the financial needs of small business owners,” said Rebecca Macieira-Kaufmann, EVP and head of Wells Fargo’s small business segment. “By offering a wide range of products and resources, such as our Small Business Webcast Series, Wells Fargo helps small business owners to succeed financially - in business and personally.”


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