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Thursday, September 9, 2010

Another Top 10 listing for Portland: small-business bankruptcies

We're up to no. 7 nationally. And Oregon moves up from no. 15 to no. 11.

Comments (6)

I've been watching this for quite some time. I suspect since Portland got into the real estate boom late compared to, say, Atlanta, you had more small companies that could afford to keep going with home equity loans. It's been long enough of a downturn that business still hasn't picked up to its old levels, the previous loan is gone, and that line of credit has turned back into pumpkins and mice. You're seeing a lot of shakeouts like this, all over the country, and the more precipitous drops elsewhere are because those other areas have already been flensed.

Now, I could be cruel and point out that a lot of these small businesses were "groovy retail" spots, with business plans full of delusions and an overdependence upon miracles and customers that simply didn't exist. Yeah, you had a lot of those. A lot of others, a depressingly large number of others, though, were otherwise viable companies that could have and often did survive previous downturns. They just didn't have the wherewithall to survive this rough of a downturn.

Woot-Woot! Good thing we have a Mayor who is concentrating on economic development, promoting tourism, and attracting new employers.

Otherwise, we'd be screwed.

I don't understand. I mean, we have a streetcar.

Im sure we can get to #1 if we really focus. Let's see what we can do to completely drive all businesses out of downtown.

I guess all those "clean tech" companies have blown through their subsidies.

You know, those figures do include the entire metro area and not just the city of Portland. There's Vancouver and Clark County, for instance, where the unemployment rate is several points higher than in the rest of the metro area and small businesses dependent on local residents could be even more adversely affected than they are in the rest of the metro area.

It may not be the case, but pretending that a report on the Portland metro area means the city of Portland alone when only about a third of the metro area's residents live in the city is a fairly serious statistical error. It's possible that all of the area's small business bankruptcies are concentrated within the city, but it's far more likely that they're correlated to the economic health of the constituent subregions.

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