Credit Card: Use Business or Personal? 

by Jerry Ernst

When a small business needs fast money, it’s easy to whip out a credit card to make the purchase. Every entrepreneur relies on them. Why not, when they’re convenient and easy to manage? But the line between personal and business credit can be blurry. When is it appropriate to open a business credit card, versus… [More]

Common-Sense Income Strategies

by Mike Hunter

The subtitle may well be Common-Sense, Purpose-Based Investing for Your Retirement with Steps and Strategies to Help You. This book begins with the idea that when we reach the age of 50, we need to change from a portfolio filled with stocks and growth investment strategies to step-by-step strategies to build out our retirement income.… [More]

Protect Against the Top Three Financial Scams in Arizona

by Robert Gibboni

The typical business loses 5 percent of its annual revenue to fraud, according to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. Financial statement fraud causes the greatest median loss, with an average of $975,000 per scheme. As a financial institution concerned with protecting our customers from scams, we bring experience in identifying scams and preventing being… [More]

Banking on Your Business

by RaeAnne Marsh

Tales of usurers make for enduring literature (Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice is a notable example), but it’s an indisputable fact that commerce would not exist without reputable financial institutions and loan opportunity. Of course, banking has evolved to be much more than a lending resource. For instance, as Toby Day, chairman of the Arizona Bankers Association… [More]

Diversity Trends in Small Business Investing

by U.S. Small Business Administration

Maria Contreras-Sweet, administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration and the voice of small business on President Obama’s Cabinet, last month heralded the release of “Measuring the Representation of Women and Minorities in the SBIC Program,” a groundbreaking SBA study showing the racial and gender makeup of investment boards is tied directly to investment decisions they… [More]

SBA Awards $18.8 Million to Support Small-Business Trade Growth

by U.S. Small Business Administration

Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet, head of the U.S. Small Business Administration, last month announced $18.85 million to support export growth among American small businesses. The funding was awarded through SBA’s competitive State Trade Expansion Program. The share for Arizona businesses in Fiscal Year 2016 is $299,903. Calling it a boon for America’s small businesses, she explains,… [More]

Captives Can Help Contain Costs

by Mike Ferguson

Business risk is on the rise — from the danger of a cyber-attack to the potential failure of a crucial supplier halfway around the globe. In response, companies are increasingly creating their own insurance companies to mitigate those risks. A “captive insurer” is a company that provides coverage solely to the firm or group of… [More]

NAPA Revamps for Retail

by RaeAnne Marsh

NAPA, which, for more than 90 years, has built its name on being a wholesale auto parts distributor serving largely auto repair businesses and fleets, is looking to grow its retail side. It is rolling out the program in 20 markets around the country, and, here in the Valley, the Gilbert store is one of… [More]

Financially Serving the Hispanic Market

by RaeAnne Marsh

There’s more to serving the Hispanic market than simply translating messaging into Spanish. Language is a component, “but you need cultural relevance,” explains Luis Soto, a driving force in Vantage West’s recent designation of “Juntos Avanzamos” (“Together We Advance”) from Texas’s Cornerstone Credit Union League. “Vantage West is the first credit union outside the Cornerstone… [More]

The Expanding ATM Network

by RaeAnne Marsh

Allpoint recently added QuikTrip as a retail partner to serve the Phoenix area. The company works with banks and credit unions to provide surcharge-fee ATMs to the institutions’ customers at convenient, premier retail locations — the kind of well-known and trusted retail brand names that are already part of people’s daily routines. Financial institutions are… [More]