Heard on the Street: new rules around PPP, nursing small businesses back to health, and COVID-19’s outsized impact on minority-owned small businesses

Heard on the Street – here’s what we were reading last week:

PPP forgiveness: Lenders push for loans under $150,000 to be turned to grants: The Consumer Bankers Association and the Bank Policy Institute asked for loans under $150,000 to be automatically forgiven, citing that “considerable gaps in policy, particularly regarding the forgiveness aspect of PPP, … has proven to be unnecessarily burdensome for many of the businesses it sought to help.”

Trump signs bill changing Paycheck Protection Program into law: The Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act makes changes to the PPP that include extending the period for using loans to 24 weeks from eight weeks. It also would let borrowers spend just 60%, rather than 75%, of their loan proceeds on paying workers and still be eligible for loan forgiveness.

Meet the financial doctor who nurses wounded small businesses back to health: Even before PPP came along, only 3% of SBA-backed loans in the city went to businesses in low-income neighborhoods, said Michael Roth, managing partner at Next Street, an advisory firm that helps minority-owned businesses raise financing. “Those who historically are underserved were last in line when it came to PPP,” Roth said.

COVID-19’s effect on minority-owned small businesses in the United States: In a new report, McKinsey & Company outlines how already vulnerable, minority-owned small businesses are bracing for disproportionate impact, and provides some recommendations for relief.