SBCS 2021 Non-employer Firms Survey

There are 32.5 million small businesses in the United States. That’s 32.5 million stories of small-business ownership. Representative data drawn from these stories can shed light on more universal experiences.

But representative data on small businesses are limited. That’s particularly true when it comes to how and why owners seek financing for their businesses.

Through the annual Small Business Credit Survey (SBCS), the Federal Reserve Banks capture one-of-a-kind data on small business financing year after year. The data are an aggregation of thousands of small-business voices who have responded to questions that can’t be answered through other data sources. For example: If you applied for credit in the past year, were you satisfied with your experience?

By sharing their perspectives, small-business owners can proactively inform policy conversations and decision-making. It’s also a way to help represent other, similar small businesses. SBCS data are used to produce public reports that delve into credit experiences by firm characteristics. In 2020, our reports focused on firms with employees, firms without employees, and firms owned by people of color.

Informing solutions around small business access to credit

Apolitical and independent, the Fed is in a unique position to collect, analyze, and distribute this data. My Federal Reserve colleagues are prepared to convene conversations at the federal, state, and local level, and to bring information to the table. A few details about the survey:

  • The survey takes 10 minutes to complete.
  • It’s open to for-profit businesses with fewer than 500 employees.
  • Responses are confidential.
  • Small-business owners do not need to provide any personal information.

Small-business owners: Tell us what you’re experiencing. My team and I will combine it with the experiences of thousands of other small-business owners across the United States to help uncover the universal.

Take the survey today, and learn more at

September 8 – November 19, 2021

The 2021 Small Business Credit Survey is now closed

We hope you’ll share the survey with small-business owners in your professional network. If you are a small-business owner, please complete the survey. We want to hear from you. Thank you in advance for contributing to one-of-a-kind data on small business credit experiences.

About the Small Business Credit Survey

The Small Business Credit Survey (SBCS) is an annual, national survey of firms with fewer than 500 employees. Respondents are asked to share information about their business performance, financing needs and choices, and borrowing experiences. Responses to the SBCS provide insights on the dynamics behind lending trends and shed light on various segments of the small business population.

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