In terms of numbers of loans, businesses owned by women receive only 16 percent of all conventional small-business loans, and 17 percent of loans backed by the Small Business Administration. Their loan applications are more likely to be rejected than those from businesses owned by men, and the loans they get are likely to have more stringent terms.The good news is that this information is coming from Democrats on the Senate Small Business & Entrepreneurship Committee, so the issue is getting some congressional attention. The bad news is fairly obvious—both in the funding numbers and in the likelihood that the current Congress, with Republicans controlling the House and choking up the Senate via filibuster, will actually do anything about anything of importance.
Women also receive only 7 percent of venture-capital funding. [...]
Women are also falling short in receiving government contracts. Although Congress in 1994 set a governmentwide goal of awarding 5 percent of federal contract dollars to small businesses owned by women, it hasn't met that goal. The closest it has come is 4 percent, in the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, 2012, the report said. Failing to meet the goal costs women-owned businesses nearly $5.7 billion in government contracts each year, it said.
Over the past few decades, the percentage of businesses owned by women has shot up, from 4.6 percent in 1972 to nearly 29 percent in 2007. But loans and government contracts haven't kept pace, with women getting just $1 for every $23 of conventional small-business loans given:
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