The JOBS act was supposed to make it easier for ordinary Americans to help their neighbors start companies and rebuild local economies. Unfortunately, the SEC gutted the meat of the bill, assuming Americans weren’t smart enough (too stupid) to take intelligent risks with their money.
The JOBS act would have let small businesses ask for small investments to finance operations and growth. An individual who made less than $250k (most of the nation) could buy shares in the company, up to 10% of their annual income.
In my research, I’ve found that many startup businesses need only $20k-$50k, Restoring the original intent of the JOBS act would solve that easily.
For example,. 20 neighbors with average wages of $35000 could have each invested in these companies, providing enough capital to help that business begin to employ additional staff. This is neighbor helping neighbor, not Wall Street creating complex financial products that only the wealthy can benefit from.
Kickstarter and similar sites show the willingness of ordinary citizens to pool small amounts of money for solid business ideas, but those crowdfunding sites are not allowed by law to give the funders any meaningful return for their investment, limiting rewards to personal thanks and company trinkets.
A reinvigorated JOBS act would give middle America the option to earn more than the 1% offered at the bank and make their local communities better places to live.