Ben Bernanke, U.S. Federal Reserve chairman, encouraged banks this week to open up more capital for lending to small- and mid-sized businesses.

In a Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago meeting in Detroit, Bernanke urged banks to give thorough examination to all loan applications and to avoid "automatic rejections."

"While maintaining appropriate prudence, lenders should do all they can to meet the needs of legitimate, creditworthy borrowers," said Bernanke, according to the New York Times.

Because of small businesses' importance in jumpstarting the economy, the government has put a focus on funneling them as much money as they can to get started. As a result, the recession may end up being a great climate for those considering beginning a company. Entrepreneurs are catching on - the Small Business Administration announced a 25 percent hit increase to its Web site this year, according to Fox Business.

Bank of America also recently announced a $10-billion commitment to helping small businesses through credit extensions and technical assistance. That number is expected to increase by 5 percent each year. It might pay off for companies to take advantage of this small business opportunity and take the government and the banks up on their offers.

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