Three years ago, American Express launched an event designed to support small businesses all across the United States. It was named Small Business Saturday and the first Saturday each following Thanksgiving was designated as the day for its celebration. Today is Small Business Saturday 2013.
The idea caught on and has subsequently received the endorsement of many other private sector and governmental organizations. Two years ago, the U.S. Senate adopted a resolution praising the effort and "supporting efforts to increase awareness of the value of locally owned small businesses."
That resolution highlights some of the reasons why such enterprises deserve broad support. Among them are the following:
Small businesses represent 99.7 percent of all businesses having employees in the United States;
Small businesses employ 50 percent of the employees in the private sector in the United States;
Small businesses pay 44 percent of the total payroll of the employees in the private sector in the United States;
Small businesses are responsible for more than 50 percent of the private, nonfarm product of the gross domestic product;
Small businesses generated 65 percent of net new jobs during the last 17 years and
Small businesses generate 60 to 80 percent of all new jobs annually.
Clearly these enterprises are vital components of the American economy nationally. That is no less true in the communities this newspaper serves.
Consequently, The Messenger strongly backs this effort to help small businesses succeed. We urge our readers to observe Small Business Saturday 2013 by patronizing one or more of these unique, locally owned enterprises. They help our communities thrive and deserve the strongest possible support.