Not quite but it really feels like it to many, many people. The global recession and the national recession in the US officially came to an end in June of 2009 but no-one would really seem to know it. While the stock market has recovered somewhat the average investor is largely staying away from the markets because they same stacked against the individual investor. Hence, the influence of phenomena such as the Flash Crash in which large, institutional investors can cause dramatics shifts in the markets with 1 or 2 large trades. Additionally, other research now reveals that some 85% of college graduates are actually moving back home—so called boomerang kids. Everyone knows about the 9.6 to 9.7% official unemployment rate which means that the real unemployment rate is substantially higher. And finally, housing, which typically leads economies out of recessions, is nowhere near reaching bottom as the ongoing foreclosure crisis keeps dragging the economy down. An estimate 10 to 12% of all homes are in some state of distress and recent data indicates that foreclosure auctions just hit a record high of 930,437 which is a 4% increase over the previous quarter. So what’s the point of all of this gloom and doom? The point is that now is a great time to start a business. Sure, obtaining a business loan is difficult and the Three FFF Bank (friends, family & fools) might be closed but it’s a great time to take a risk and put some savings into a small business and successful small businesses begin with a business plan. If you have a little more funding available you can have a custom written business plan completed for several hundred dollars which is always advised. However, if you are truly strapped for cash there are numerous pre-written business plans or business plan templates that can be had for $20 or $30 which cover the most common businesses such as coffee shops, drycleaners, ice cream parlors, restaurants and bars to taverns, among others. Remember out of great strife comes great opportunity so don’t let the economy get you down.