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SBA Increases Size Standards for 70 Industries

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration issued four final rules in the Federal Register today, increasing size standards for firms in four North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) Sectors and one Subsector:  Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing and Hunting (Sector 11), Finance and Insurance (Sector 52), Management of Companies and Enterprises (Sector 55), Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation (Sector 71) and Support Services for Mining (Subsector 213). 

Size standards define the maximum size a firm can be and still be considered a small business.  The revised standards reflect changes in marketplace conditions and public comments that SBA received to the proposed rules. 

New size standards will enable more businesses in these sectors to obtain or retain small business status; will give federal agencies a larger pool of small businesses from which to choose for their procurement programs; and will make more small businesses eligible for SBA’s loan programs.

SBA increased size standards for businesses in 11 industries in the Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing and Hunting Sector.  More than 7,800 additional firms will qualify as small under these new size standards and become eligible for SBA’s loan and federal procurement programs. 

SBA also increased size standards for 36 industries for firms in the Finance and Insurance Sector and two industries in the Management of Companies and Enterprises Sector.  SBA changed the basis for measuring size from assets to annual revenues for the International Trade Financing industry and deleted the Real Estate Investment Trusts from its table of size standards.  More than 7,400 additional businesses will qualify as small under the new size standards and become eligible for SBA’s loan and federal procurement programs. 

Size standards for 17 industries were also increased for firms in the Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Sector.  More than 1,450 additional firms will qualify as small under these new size standards and become eligible for SBA’s loan and federal procurement programs. 

SBA also increased size standards for three of the four industries for firms in the Support Activities for Mining Subsector within the Mining, Quarrying and Oil and Gas Extraction Sector (Sector 21).  Subsector 213 is the only subsector within Sector 21 which has revenues-based size standards.  The remaining industries within Sector 21 have employee-based size standards, which SBA will review in the near future.  More than 475 additional firms will qualify as small under the new size standards and become eligible for SBA’s loan and federal procurement programs.

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The four final rules will be effective July 22, 2013.  To review the rules and public comments, go to www.regulations.gov.    Each sector has a separate RIN number:

  • Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing and Hunting – (RIN 3245-AG43).
  • Finance and Insurance & Management of Companies and Enterprises – (RIN 3245-AG45).
  • Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation – (RIN 3245‑AG36).
  • Support Activities for Mining – (RIN 3245-AG44).

The SBA is reviewing all size standards, and takes into account the structural characteristics of individual industries, including average firm size, the degree of competition, and federal government contracting trends.  This ensures that small business size definitions reflect current economic conditions in those industries.  Under the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010, SBA will continue its comprehensive review of all size standards for the next several years. 

The SBA issued a White Paper entitled “Size Standards Methodology” which explains how SBA establishes, reviews and modifies its receipts-based and employee-based small business size standards.  This paper is available online at http://www.sba.gov/size.  Also available on this site is the latest about SBA’s revisions to small business size standards; for details click on the article “What’s New with Size Standards.”

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