Separate surveys by Goldman Sachs and StoreConnect suggest small and midsize businesses (SMBs) are facing economic challenges on multiple fronts. The Goldman Sachs survey found 91 percent of SMBs are dealing with inflation, supply chain issues and workforce shortages, all of which are negatively impacting their businesses. Researchers also found 73 percent of business owners struggle to meet rising energy prices. Khari Parker, member of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Voices National Leadership Council and owner of Connie’s Chicken and Waffles in Baltimore, noted that economic recovery has been slow for small business owners.
The StoreConnect survey highlights the need for ecommerce merchants to improve their websites to support international ecommerce requirements. However, Mikel Lindsaar, CEO and founder of StoreConnect, said small to midsize business owners should spend more time growing their businesses and less time maintaining ecommerce websites. The right mix of tools and what he called “ecommerce 3.0” could remedy this issue, he stated.
Financial services and payments industry leaders met on April 28, 2022, with U.S. government officials in Washington, D.C., to discuss the future of banking. The hybrid hearing, held at the Rayburn House Office on Capitol Hill and live-streamed on Cisco WebEx, was titled "What's in Your Digital Wallet? A Review of Recent Trends in Mobile Banking and Payments" and hosted by the Task Force on Financial Technology.
The private-sector invitees included Raúl Carrillo, associate research scholar, Yale Law School and deputy director of the Law and Political Economy Project; Mishi Choudhary, legal director, Software Freedom Law Center; Renita Marcellin, senior policy analyst, Americans for Financial Reform; Kia McAllister-Young, director, America Saves, Consumer Federation of America; and Scott Talbott, senior vice president of government affairs, Electronic Transactions Association.
Chase for Business launched a suite of products and services on May 3, 2022, designed to help small and midsize businesses (SMBs) leverage technology to win more sales, deepen customer relationships and stay ahead of competitors across the United States. Timed to coincide with Small Business Week, products and services include educational outreach, enhanced credit card rewards, contactless-enabled POS devices, and a free trial with reservations app Tock to help Chase business client restaurateurs, according to Chase representatives. A description of all promotional items is available at www.chase.com/business/banking/small-business-week.
Brad Brodigan, global head of small business at Chase Payment Solutions, pointed out that SMB owners need reliable support from trusted service providers. Small business owners "need a financial partner that reduces the complexity of how they accept payments while providing them access to their money as quickly as possible," he said.
A new report, titled Best Practices for U.S. Money Services Businesses: Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Financing of Terrorism Compliance Program, was published May 11, 2022, by the Electronic Transactions Association and leading money service business trade associations. Seeking to share best practices for mitigating financial crime, the ETA and co-authors—INFiN, a Financial Services Alliance; the Money Services Business Association; and The Money Services Round Table—noted that money service businesses are a diverse cohort that needs more than a one-size-fits-all approach to implementing risk-based AML programs.
"The implementation of the AML program will be dependent on the type of the MSB and the nature of its business footprint," the authors wrote. They recommended a four-pronged approach to documenting AML programs in accordance with FinCEN requirements :designation of a qualified Bank Secrecy Act/anti-money laundering officer; establishing policies, procedures and controls; training; and independent audit/testing. Designing such an AML will help MSBs meet BSA requirements and protect them from being used to facilitate money laundering and terrorist financing, researchers noted.
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