Small business owners hope economic uncertainty doesn't slow spending this holiday season

Consumers spent an estimated $23 billion at small businesses and restaurants on what is known as Small Business Saturday in 2021, and the Small Business Administration is hoping for a repeat performance this Saturday.

Pastry chef Jean Chrispin Djomo opened his new French bakery, Les Delices de France Bakery, in the Dallas International District thanks to a loan from the Small Business Administration.

"I decided I wanted to do something that I love and also can feed me," Djomo said.

On Tuesday, the acting SBA Southcentral Regional Communications Director  visited the artery ahead of Small Business Saturday, when consumers are encouraged to shop small businesses the Saturday after Thanksgiving.

"Business is going on whether it is a good year or bad year because that's the nature of the beast," said Ahmad Goree, from the SBA.

Goree says 97% of all businesses in the U.S. are small businesses.

This holiday shopping season comes at a time of growing economic uncertainty.

"We're really at an extraordinary juncture in this economy," said SMU economist Mike Davis.

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Davis believes record inflation could temper consumer spending and rising interest rates makes borrowing money on credit cards or through loans and mortgages more expensive for everyone.

"Right now business is good, but how much longer is that going to last?" he said. "We can hope it'll last for a long time, but there's so much uncertainty now. We could have a recession sometime in the next couple of quarters."

Consumers we talked to at Djomo's bakery plan to support him and other businesses as much as possible.

"I'm so glad that we found it and I think we're going to be coming here for the croissants," said customer Judith Alvarenga.

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"It's a little bit of a patriotic duty to support that sort of thing," said Ben Jaminchessler.

The hope is it's enough to keep the doors open in the coming year.

"Things are tough, but I have a lot of hope," said Djomo.

Davis says everybody should be prepared for some fairly sudden changes in the economy in the coming months.

He says it is important to set some money aside whether you are a business owner or consumer.