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News Release 2008-108 | September 18, 2008

OCC Focuses on the Small Business Administration’s 7(a) Loan Guarantee Program

WASHINGTON — The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) today published a Community Developments Insights report which looks at bank participation in the SBA’s 7(a) Loan Guarantee Program. By reducing lender risk, this $17.5-billion-a-year initiative helps banks supply credit to small enterprises nationwide. The report highlights how banks can use the 7(a) program to develop new business, mitigate risk, and help meet their Community Reinvestment Act goals.

"The SBA 7(a) Loan Program offers time-tested products that help small businesses secure the necessary credit they need to develop and expand, while minimizing bank risk," said Comptroller of the Currency John C. Dugan. "Ensuring that small businesses have the financial capital to grow is one of the keys to facilitating innovation and employment opportunities within the U.S economy." The SBA’s Director of the Office of Financial Assistance, Grady B. Hedgespeth, added, "The 7(a) Loan Program is an important financial tool that can simultaneously assist the banking industry and the small business community."

This Insights report highlights the potential benefits and risks posed to lenders by the SBA 7(a) Loan Program, describes the program’s regulatory requirements, and outlines how lenders can receive SBA approval to offer 7(a) loans.

The Insights report can be accessed quickly by selecting "Community Affairs" on the OCC Internet home page,, and choosing "Publications and Resource Materials."

Media Contact

Dean DeBuck
(202) 874-5770