NEW YORK (AP) -- Lending to small business is slowing, possibly a sign of deteriorating confidence in the economy from entrepreneurs.
A study released Tuesday by PayNet, a research firm that tracks loans to small business, shows that lending fell 3 percent in March.
The Thomson Reuters/PayNet Small Business Lending Index was at 98.5 in March, down from a revised 101.8 in February. The index was at 110.5 in December, when companies were rushing to acquire equipment before the expiration of lucrative tax deductions at the end of 2011. PayNet's analysis shows that lending is up 10 percent from a year ago, but it's also at the level where it was in 2005.
Many companies have been hesitant to borrow since the recession because they have been uncertain about the economy.