Wells Fargo: Colorado SBA lending up

The leading lender for U.S. Small Business Administration programs in Colorado reports an increase in activity during the first quarter of the 2011 fiscal year compared to the same quarter last year.

Wells Fargo reported that it issued 86 loans worth a combined $35 million in Colorado through the SBA 7(a) loan guarantee program. That compares to 51 loans worth a collective $18 million issued during the first quarter of the 2010 fiscal year.

For all of the 2010 fiscal year, Wells Fargo issued 203 loans through the 7(a) program worth a total of nearly $50.5 million.

Wells Fargo executives attributed the latest increase to growing demand from small businesses as well as a continuation of fee waivers for SBA loans.

“Our Colorado economy is showing signs it is on the mend, and this is one more measure of our progress,” said Nathan Christian, regional president for Wells Fargo in Colorado. “We’ve been lending to local businesses throughout this challenging time and we’ll continue to say ‘yes’ to as many credit-worthy borrowers as possible.”