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Jim Blasingame’s 2010 crystal ball predictions

This year marks the 10th year of my Small Business Advocate Crystal Ball predictions. For the first nine years, my accuracy percentage has averaged 70%, including 13 for 16 in 2009. Take a look and see what you think about how I will do in 2010.

2010 Prediction: The fragile economic recovery will continue at a marathon pace with steady annual GDP growth of between 2% and 3%.

2010 Prediction: Surviving small businesses will have fewer competitors due to recession casualties and fewer start-ups.

2010 Prediction: Big business layoffs in 2008-09 will produce small business opportunity in two ways: less competition for customers and outsourced business from the big guys.

2010 Prediction: Reversing the 2009 trend, growing small business loan demand will signal Main Street recovery.

2010 Prediction: Improved balance sheets and TARP repayment won’t cause large banks to increase small business lending.

2010 Prediction: Community banks will continue to increase as the option-of-choice for small business growth capital.

2010 Prediction: The multifaceted challenges of the real estate triumvirate of housing, mortgages and commercial will continue to produce significant economic headwinds.

2010 Prediction: The second jobless recovery in a decade will result in unemployment above 9% at year-end.

2010 Prediction: Diminished consumer credit, combined with a new aversion to debt, will stunt economic growth.

2010 Prediction: U.S. stock markets ended 2009 flush due to earnings based on expense cuts, not revenue growth. This scenario will not repeat in 2010.

2010 Prediction: So called “health care reform” legislation will be signed into law along strict party lines.

2010 Prediction: Election-year realities will cause Democrats to forsake their leadership’s goals for pro-union and cap-and-trade legislation.

2010 Prediction: Republicans will increase seats in both houses without gaining control of either but will win a filibuster minority in the Senate.

2010 Prediction: The federal government will intervene to keep California out of bankruptcy. New York will follow.

2010 Prediction: Under pressure from within and without, a desperate Iranian government will take steps that disrupt geopolitics and global markets.

2010 Prediction: Recognizing the power of community building technologies and practices, small businesses will increasingly leverage these tools to find new competitive advantages.

2010 Prediction: With increased product information and user experiences available online, The Age of the Customer has begun. More customers will choose businesses offering online platforms that promote dialogue and deliver targeted information.

Finally, continue to expect a deliberate, marathon-like recovery.

I talked about these predictions in more detail recently on my radio program, The Small Business Advocate Show. Take a few minutes to listen and let me know what you think about my prophecies. Listen Live! Download, Too!

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