Shifting even a modest amount of consumer spending from chains to locally owned businesses would have a major impact on the West Michigan economy, according to a new study.… Read More
The Capital Region’s future would be much better served by fostering the growth of locally owned businesses, rather than chasing after big-name national retailers, as was suggested in Chris Churchill’s May 11 article, "Trendsetter shops bypass region."
Research shows local businesses deliver significantly greater economic returns for a community than national chains. A study conducted in Chicago by the firm Civic Economics found that every $100 spent at a national chain generated an average of $43 in additional economic activity in the local area. That same $100 spent at a locally owned store or restaurant created an average of $68 worth of new local economic activity.
Why do local businesses deliver so much more economic bang for our buck?
A new study commissioned by Local First Arizona reports that a purchasing contract with an independent local supplier recirculates three times as much money in the local economy as the same contract with a national firm. Local First Arizona is using the study to galvanize support for a legislative measure that would keep more of the public dollars spent on state contracts in Arizona. … Read More
The American Booksellers Association’s January 2008 Winter Institute conference featured a roundtable discussion with authors Bill McKibben, Stacy Mitchell, and Michael Shuman, who talked about the importance of rebuilding local economies.… Read More
While many parts of the country are overrun with chain stores, San Francisco remains a stronghold for locally owned businesses, according to a new study, which also found that those local stores generate sizable benefits for the city’s economy.
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Last November, the consulting firm Global Insight (GI) released a study that found that Wal-Mart saved U.S. consumers $263 billion in 2004. That works out to $2,329 for the average household — a striking degree of economic benefit. But a rigorous new analysis by the Economic Policy Institute (EPI), a non-profit think-tank, concludes that the GI study is “fraught with problems.”
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This report opens with an overview of research on the impacts of large chain stores and the benefits of locally owned businesses. It then outlines dozens of concrete strategies to rebuild the homegrown economy. Although this report was written for Maine, the strategies are applicable in other states. … Read More