Over the past six quarters, the SBA’s loan program has posted the second-largest dollar volume ever, supporting $30.25 billion in loans to small businesses, the agency said.
That record occurred in fiscal year 2012, which ended on Sept. 30.
The SBA said the near-record pace was driven in part by a record year for the Certified Development Company (504) loan program, which supported $15.09 billion in small business credits.
In its two main programs, the 7(a) and 504, small businesses received 53,848 loans totaling $30.25 billion during FY 2012. Loan volume in FY 2011 totaled $30.5 billion and $22.6 billion in FY 2010, according to the SBA.
Over the past year, the agency said it began streamlining and simplifying many of the loan programs in order to provide more access and opportunity for both lenders, including credit unions, and small businesses.
As part of this effort, the SBA said it encouraged lenders to use more of their own paperwork and the agency’s updated processing systems, so that more than 80% of its loan applications can now be processed online.
“Reaching such strong numbers is a clear sign that both the business and lending communities are regaining their confidence in the economic climate of the country,” said SBA Administrator Karen Mills. “It means that the credit markets are increasingly willing to help small businesses establish themselves, grow and create new jobs for Americans.”