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Ask HN: How is your PPP loan application coming along?
254 points by AndrewBissell 41 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 207 comments
My wife and I run a small winery with about $400,000 in annual sales and a monthly payroll of about $4,000. The COVID-19 situation dealt a blow to our sales and cash flow so we submitted an application for a PPP loan with Mechanics Bank, where we keep our business checking account. So far, the process has looked like this:

On April 6 we submitted an application to the bank's portal, which included the standard federal form with information like average payroll and headcount.

On April 8 we received an email saying that we needed to submit some additional information, which just turned out to be repetition of payroll information we had already listed on the federal form.

On April 13 we received another email asking us to submit ownership details for any equity holders in our LLC.

It's now April 17 and we have not heard anything back. If I call the bank's number, I get a recording which says they'll process our application as soon as possible and they're unable to provide status updates over the phone.

Now I'm reading reports that the program is already out of money. If this is what's supposed to help small- and medium-sized businesses weather the pandemic, it is not inspiring much confidence. Have others had a similar experience?




Throwaway, because I work for a bank doing PPP. First off, I want to say I feel for anyone struggling - I know from my exposure a lot of loans didn't get in. We had random people from all over the bank working nights and weekends trying to get these loans into the SBA. The news didn't do justice how much of a disaster this program was with the SBA. For example during training, the SBA app crashed 11 times while trying to enter one application - and this was after hours. We spent days on the phone trying to get someone to get us access to the SBA's API - no one could help us. In the end, a lot of loans didn't end up getting into the system.

Second off, we're already tooling up for the second round of SBA to get more loans through the system by eliminating a lot of manual processing. So have some hope and contact your reps and senators - we're already getting ready to get loans through once they open up the program again.


Also a throwaway for the same reason.

We are facing the same issues here. We are struggling to even get SBA logins created to add additional manpower to the manual process. I'm curious how paypal was able to push these loans through so quick, I'm assuming they have some API access that is difficult to obtain.

We are also trying to implement some automation for the second round. If you are able to share are you building that or implementing a 3rd party product? We are looking at a few 3rd party apps and have a few hopeful candidates that look like they will help.


Most big banks completely screwed their clients. You can read reddit/r/smallbusiness

1) The SBA was approving PPP submissions in like an hour (rubberstamping).

2) Any delay was 100% your bank. Many banks just didnt get to applications but didnt notify people. Some banks said people were approved (by the bank) but didnt submit those people to the SBA

3) There was a lot of time to submit to intermediaries like paypal. Paypal was turning applications around in 24 hours to funding. There were people that applied on 4/3 with a big bank that didnt get it and people that applied thursday night through paypal that got it

4) Big banks often added additional criteria which made it harder to complete the application. Some big banks were not using the correct calculations

5) Once you have an SBA loan number you are good and money is allocated. Banks have 10 days to disburse the funds

6) The SBA ran out of allocated funds, not all the money has been disbursed.

7) People submitted to multiple lenders and it was fine

Overall I think the program went pretty well and there was plenty of time for people to get applications in. There was obviously working of the system (hedge funds, large restaurant chains, etc) but if you look at the distribution of funds there were still many many small loans.

750K under $150K with an average of $51K

I spent the last 2 weeks doing nothing but reading reports, stats etc about the program to ensure I was able to get it for my team. Lots of people submitted with a big bank and just waited accepting no updates, now are complaining after it is over.


750,000 loans of $150,000 would use about $112 billion in funds -- less than 1/3rd of the allocated amount. But if, as you stated, the average loan was only $51,000, then these smaller loans comprised a much smaller piece of the total.

The way the statistics are presented is purposefully designed to obfuscate the fact that the vast majority of funds went to large businesses while small ones were very often shut out.


This is definitely one instance where you care less about the average and more about the median (and quartile).


Not when figuring out how much had been distributed


My business bank (Wells Fargo) didn't even begin taking applications until the day before the money ran out.

My personal bank (Bank of America) flat-out refused to talk to me, since I'd never had a business credit or loan through them.

Quickbooks is apparently planning something, but of course have nothing ready yet.

PayPal never mentioned to me they were an option. I've logged into my business account with them daily since this all began. Not a peep. Not an email. Not a notification anywhere on the page. Nada.

I scoured the SBA page daily - hell, three times a day - checking up on my EIDL application and also looking for any update on them offering PPP. Never saw anything, despite many people asserting like you are that it was there all along and early.

It's like you're from a completely different reality.


FWIW, my experiences:

I filed an EIDL partway through on the SBA site Apr 6, got far enough create an account, to save my work and get an application number.

Login UI was gone by April 7 when I went to finish my app. No hint of the UI I'd used one day earlier.

Tried again April 9 - different application interface. Got through primary info input, requested $10K as emergency bistro, received an application number (different from the first number), then the process closed down suddenly. Got two emails from SBA saying my application had been received. There's no way to check status. Still hearing crickets since April 9.


SBA should have just distributed the money directly without overhead.

A year later, we can hire lots of investigators to verify the loans and pursue any fraud.


I’ve always thought it would make sense to attach specific penalties to this type of legislation. Something akin to “If you lie on an application, your loans won’t be forgiven and you will need to pay a 50% penalty. If you’re a bank and you knowingly facilitate this fraud, you will lose Federal backing for the loans and your employees and executives will be subject to minimum 1 year sentences in Federal custody.”

It’s unfortunate we live in such a weird carceral state yet white collar crimes that would probably be the type most deterred by the threat of prison are so rarely prosecuted.


If those kind of risks were imposed on banks they would only work with businesses they knew very well or not at all. As it is there were significant questions from the banks side on what they would be liable for if the loan was ultimately found to be invalid, or fraud.


That’s why you cut the banks out of the process as the poster you replied to suggested.


> your employees and executives will be subject to minimum 1 year sentences in Federal custody.

The bank will process applications very very slowly in that case.


You’re expecting congress to be logical.

Mark Cuban actually had an equally interesting idea as yours - just let every business overdraw their account by some amount.

I like your idea better, but either way, there is zero possibility that congress could do it in a simple way - they just don’t have the DNA for simple.


This is pretty infuriating to read when I spent so much fucking time with three different banks and my accountant over three weeks to prep and apply and I’m still unsure what the situation is in my case.

All on top of just keeping my restaurant afloat and keeping my employees safe, while I have a newborn, while the world is on fire and favorite customers come by crying about losing their jobs and fuck, what’s the rainy day fund for if not for commiserating six feet apart after giving them a free burger.

So yeah I guess I just sat on my fat ass for weeks and I shouldn’t be complaining.......?


The entire purpose of banks is to provide financial services and assistance. There was tremendous confusion, warnings and even outright denial by many financial institutions in aiding businesses that tried to apply.

I find it hard to blame the companies when they did everything right and the banks failed them.


I think there's a widespread sentiment in this country where if you get screwed over, it's on you, you should've known better. Everyone just passes the buck.

Well guess what, most people entrusted banks to do the right thing, why the hell else are you paying them for (with your deposits).


>> most people entrusted banks to do the right thing

This prevailing sentiment that banks/government/overlords will do the right thing has been mostly proven wrong time and time again. I don't agree with the top-level commenter's tone, but I understand the content.

Putting faith in large business or bureaucracy of any kind is a recipe for disaster.


Yeah I get it, but consumers can theoretically fight back by pulling their deposits and going somewhere else. The problem is, all banks are intentionally incompetent, and starting a bank as a startup is hard due to barriers of entry. Wtf are we supposed to do?


Note: If everyone pulled all their deposits from all banks simultaneously, the financial sector would essentially collapse period.

At this point, there is no one dollar for every deposit anymore. The system is based on statistical multiplexing which has the baked in assumption whereby the case that everyone cones demanding their money will never happen. It works for the most part until everyone gets to the point they want their assets.

It's like dividing by 0, and there are a lot of people who will work very hard to frustrate any attempt to do so. They'll be very persuasive too.

>Are you trying to cause civilization to collapse?

>Do you not pike the standard of living you enjoy?

>You don't like being able to feed yourself and your family too do you?

The underpinnings of finance has been completely seperated from every experience for years, and if you even embark on a quest to understand them, you'll end up being confronted with the unsettling feeling that everything seems way more complicated and opaque than it needs to be. The jargon is nigh-impenetrable. The assumptionsand extrema very ill-conditioned, and it seems like the only reason we don't do anything to fundamentally change any dynamics of it seems to be that no one has any way of predicting the right way to go, but everyone seems to be capable of telling you that what you plan on doing will inevitably fail. A characteristic, I might add of a very poorly understood/conditioned system.

And yes. I'm aware of the irony of my post being an example of the very thing I'm calling out. The difference is, I treat the financial system as what it fundamentally is. A statistical multiplexer; just like your internet uplink, just like telecommunications equipment, just like insurance. It takes a limited amount of physically money'd throughput, amplifies it via fractional reserve mechanisms, and as long as the entire system doesn't come for their money all at once, the system cranks along just fine. If they do, you have a bank run, game over for the financial system. My major issue is the discussion always stops there. I want to know what the hell next steps are, because it seems damn irresponsible and cowardly to me that the powers that be are more than happy to perpetuate a system that keeps them on top, but are seemingly incapable of being depended upon to take any intellectual/political risk when it comes to acknowledging failure states happen. The furthest I've traced out, is bank run happens, FDIC kicks in, Federal Reserve picks up the onus as lender of last resort for banks. Woopdie doo. The Fed also seems to have the authority to wave minimal capital reserve requirements, so really they can do basically whatever they seem to want in the absence of other solvent banks. And make no mistake, the U.S. can still screw the pooch in servicing all those treasuries the rest of the world has a penchant for parking money in. The question is, what then?

>Do we just say, "Nah? Not happening?"

>Renegotiate?

>Inflate away? As the world reserve currency, we're supposedly the only one in a position to do that as long as we can defend the political circumstances granting the dollar that status.

>Declare "Come and take it?" With our military, and a large enough group of people in the grips of a sudden surge of patriotism, the United States could still theoretically get by with defending itself from outright military action, but the diplomatic damage done to the country's reputation would be a smoking crater in the short term.

>Try something completely different?

The knock on effects aren't trivial, but they are there. One of the most important lessons I've learned in life is that just because you've ignored a problem doesn't make it go away. As a society, we've ignored this problem for many years.

Banking is about trust first and foremost. If you can't trust the person you're lending to/depositing with, you're done. Your capability to organize is shot. The money changing hands in one amount vs. another isn't anywhere nearas important as the trust that makes I'll give you this piece of paper for the thing I need, then you can give it to someone else for what you need. In a way, these times are brought about by the compounding interest of lies as applied to our economic framework. I'm not entirely convinced that in the end, the solution won't end up being something along the lines of getting the biggest con man on the planet to pitch a nonsense idea in a way that convinces everyone, and just make horrible things happen to people who are unfortunate enough to call it out as bollocks.

At least that seems to have been the modus operandi thus far as best as I can get anyone to not answer. (I.e. continual refusal to answer a question as asked).

I really do hope there is someone out there who legitimately gets it, but I'm not entirely convinced the whole thing isn't some odd society-scale macro-thought, uncontemplable in it's entirety by an individual, but nevertheless played out/manifested by collective behavior. Once you hit that point of complexity though what any one person says is meaningless, and what everyone does is what is important.

So talking about it seems pointless; as frustrating to me as that is to me as a person who believes any system should be able to be rendered into an articulable description.

Anywho... Breakfast time. If you've read to this point, I apologize. I did start this post with the best of intentions. It just seems to have spiralled into incomprehensability.

EDIT: I hate economics. I can get some use out of it when it focuses on being descriptive of its field of study, but I find its purported predictive aspects to be sorely lacking.

EDIT2: When I use them most of the time. And not even consistently so, which would apparently be amazing.


This was a mandated lockdown with limited assistance provided through regulated gatekeepers. There's not much businesses can do other than just keep applying to as many banks as they can, and even then the funds weren't enough.

There are reports that those with business interruption insurance are being denied as well because a pandemic isn't covered.


> I think there's a widespread sentiment in this country where if you get screwed over, it's on you, you should've known better. Everyone just passes the buck.

It's stems from puritan morals which shaped American capitalism, this is absolutely not surprising.


>I spent the last 2 weeks doing nothing but reading reports, stats etc about the program to ensure I was able to get it for my team. Lots of people submitted with a big bank and just waited accepting no updates, now are complaining after it is over.

Hi. Joe citizen here. Congratulations on your ability to work the system. I'm in the category you deprecate, just a loser needing my big bank to run interference for me and get us our $52k. Our business did not halt and allow me to devote full time to the endeavor. The future will be run by you.


Yup. Absolute insanity that people think this is OK.


Nothing like smug HN downvotes to reinforce the Darwinian message.


> Please don't comment about the voting on comments. It never does any good, and it makes boring reading.

https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html


It was more than a complaint about downvotes. It was an observation on an unflattering characteristic of parts of the HN community.


Smug people apparently don't like being called smug.


Silicon Valley Bank vs my local bank:

SVB:

  - SVB loses a big check of ours for a week prior to PPP
  - SVB takes 1 week to get their newly developed PPP portal active
  - SVB prioritizes new clients and bigger accounts (allegedly, see Twitter screenshots)
  - Delays and bugs once it's live
Local Bank:

  - Local bank tracks and finds lost check, makes except to deposit
  - Local bank puts out a low-tech, but reliable DocuSign PPP form the day after announcement (and 6 days before SVB's portal taking PPP apps)
  - Local bank prioritizes existing clients 
  - No bugs, you can connect with them in <10 mins to talk to a rep


Silicon Valley Bank is the worst bank I've ever used and we deeply regret ever choosing them. The archaic tech, few physical branches, limited hours, expensive services, and little unique offering other than venture debt makes it a poor choice for the majority of startups. There is nothing "Silicon Valley" about SVB other than their staff salaries being the highest of any public bank.


I wonder why Stripe Atlas chose to partner with them for the banking part of their service. It doesn't seem like SVB aligns with Stripe's ethos.


Because smaller banks don't have the compliance team or technology to allow other companies to manage accounts. There's only a few banks that do this. All the challenger banks mainly use the same banks. The core bank systems don't support multi-tenant, most were designed in 90s or 80s and sometimes 70s. The bank needs to build a middle tier to control access so accounts are separated between companies. Protocols to these systems are terrible, its pretty much a terminal and you are reading columns and line positions to get data. SVB i think actually runs a pretty modern core bank system that has "modern" API, probably soap.


Why does any of that matter here? Atlas just sends an application to the bank on your behalf. It doesn’t manage anything.


Probably because of the same unfounded hype that other startups choose them for, but Stripe Atlas now offers better alternatives with Azlo [1] and Mercury [2], although you can still choose SVB if you want: https://stripe.com/docs/atlas/next#bank-account

1. https://www.azlo.com/

2. https://mercury.com/


I wouldn’t say Azlo is better, a I’ve had more issues with them and support than any other bank I’ve used. Everything they do goes through the larger bank, azlo is more like a shiny wrapper on bva.


Local credit union: funds appear in the account the next day.


"For security reasons, these insecure and buggy features are in fact features, for your protection"

.... but I'm on the phone with you, logged in to my account, reading everything about the account to you that you are asking me for security reasons... the same thing that a hacker would do....


What is the local bank?


First Bank of Colorado (https://www.efirstbank.com/) - I've moved away from CO over a decade ago but kept all my personal banking there. (No affiliation.)


My business account is with Chase.

Applied on the first day they opened their portal, which was a few days after the program started.

Got an error on the second page of the app when I told them I am C Corp, was told the portal wasn't ready for C Corps yet.

Got an email the next day to try again, and did so and it worked.

Got a promissory note automatically at the end of the application which just needed a few bits of info and my payroll worksheet from Gusto.

Was informed this morning that the program was out of money and they would let me know if/when the program had more money to fund the loan.

Oh and through the entire process Chase has stressed that my local banker has no information, no access to the system, and no way to help me, so not even bother trying to talk to them.


Chase has been horrible all around for the past weeks for even basic business banking. Many links that don’t work, customer service numbers that are incorrect, policies & procedures stated that are incorrect, and escalation processes that add further delays to getting time sensitive decisions like PPP.

I’ve had to spend countless hours for things that took me minutes to do with AmEx + local credit union.


Yeah, I still have a chase account, but mostly use them for smaller day to day things (also CC). Most of my paycheck and pretty much all my bills go to a local credit union account. Not to mention, when I went to chase, they had ATMs all over, now not so much.


I have two companies.

Both have existing checking + lending relationship with BoA.

Company #1 is 5 years old, Company #2 is 6 months old.

4/3: Both companies applied

4/6: Both companies submitted all required docs

4/8: Received a call about Company #2 - claimed we could only use 2019 payroll to determine size of loan. Incorrect - new co's can use Jan/Feb. Told the rep this. Was told I would received a callback.

4/9: Received a promissory note for Company #1, signed and submitted.

4/10-4/15: Received numerous automated calls + emails asking me to do things I already had done.

4/16: Received a request to update business info for Company #1. Did so. Rep said I should expect deposit of funds in 1-5 days.

Still nothing on Company #2. I am tentative that the $$$ is allocated already as we have been assigned an SBA loan number.

BoA did some things right (opened up first), some things arguably right (as someone who has a previous relationship, I appreciate getting prioritized), and some things terribly (having people take time to give reminders on actions that have already been taken, having no one available to answer questions or provide support, etc.)


We applied through BoA on the first day as well and never heard a word. All documents are still in Intralinks apparently untouched. Only two things we ever heard from them were the link to upload documents and a call a few days later verifying we were able to upload the documents. Radio silence since then.

I did read somewhere though that their system was looking for specific file names in Intralinks and if you did not have those your application fell through the system. After reading that, I went back yesterday and looked at our docs and one the we had renamed the addendum and template files to remove spaces. I also looked at their instructions (probably should have read them more clearly from the beginning) and it does say in there not to rename files and/or to use specific file names. I am now wondering if that was what caused our application with them to fall to the black hole.

Luckily we had applied through a local bank and received a SBA number. Waiting on final docs now from them.


As I mentioned elsewhere: This is why an independent and trustworthy Inspector General overseeing and reporting back to Congress and the public is needed. Where did this money go and who got it? Were some people favored or tipped off on how to get through the process?


/r/smallbusiness is now pretty much all SMB owners pissed that after doing everything right, their banks are saying there's no money left to disburse.

People are sharpening their pitchfork tines...


I’ve been wondering if something will act as a catalyst for social unrest, starting on a small scale, and wonder if the PPP could be a tipping point. There have already been reports of LLCs formed just to get free money for the wealthy and well-connected:

https://www.nbcnews.com/business/economy/how-stop-business-l...

I hope the above article is either wrong or misleading, but I do worry a tipping point could be hit that gets people out in the streets in numbers far larger than what was seen in Michigan.

I sense a growing distress at how bleak the situation is in places like here in Austin where relatively few deaths have been reported but countless people with livelihoods ruined.

Hopefully I’m wrong, but even having started prepping earlier than most for this lockdown, I’m still surprised every day how much worse things are getting than I imagined.


I'm not sure how one could form an LLC and get the loan. One of the requirements is that your business had to exist before they started writing the law. I think February 25th was the cutoff but I'm not sure.


I imagine that they’re really talking about shell LLCs that people have to do personal things for various reasons, that have no payroll, and perhaps no assets, apply for a PPP, because they’re legally a company.


If you don't have payroll then you don't qualify for this program. Even if you get the loan, it's not forgiven unless it's used for qualified expenses and at least 75% has to go to payroll costs.


Yep. If you invested money into the stock market via an s Corp you can also apply for the money and I've heard the loans go through


An s-Corp can invest money in the stock market? I thought only a C-Corp could do that?


Oops s & c corps. I know someone who did it using their s Corp


Now just imagine how the workers losing their jobs that don't have savings or loans feel.


Won't this create more of those people?


Effectively free money offered.... who knew they'd run out!?!!?


The issue is not that the funds ran out but how hard it is to even ask for the money for the small businesses that it was supposed to help.


I think the fact that there simply wasn't enough even for it being hard to ask means there wasn't enough.


JPMorgan Chase was able to secure multi-million dollar loans under the PPP for some of its clients that happen to be large chains and foreign corporations:

* Wave Life Sciences, a biotech company incorporated in Singapore, got $7.2 million for the 97% of the company’s work force based in the United States. https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1631574/000119312520...

* Potbelly Sandwich Shop, a chain of 400 restaurants, got $10 million for its 6,000 employees. https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1195734/000119312520...

* Texas Taco Cabana, a chain of 121 Mexican food restaurants, got $10 million https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1534992/000153499220...

* Ruth’s Hospitality Group, a Florida-based steakhouse operator, got $20 million for its 5,700 employees. https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1324272/000156459020...


Are the latter two franchises?


Not with 5700 employees. I heard on an interview that restaurant chains got an exemption as long as they had small employee counts at their locations.


=\

I could see if they’re a national franchise, but if they’re centrally owned and operated, then the p&l would roll up to the mothership. This really doesn’t make much sense and they should have had to Apply to the larger company bracket... sigh


We submitted our app through Chase the morning it opened. Days went by before we heard anything and that was an automated email that basically said they received our app. This morning I got an email stating the program is out of money, but they will keep our app on file for if/when more funds are allocated to it.


This is why an independent and trustworthy Inspector General overseeing and reporting back to Congress and the public is needed. Where did this money go and who got it? Were some people favored or tipped off on how to get through the process?


> Where did this money go and who got it?

Call me skeptic but it's likely that banks prioritized applications of companies that have significant debt with the bank. This way the bank can essentially pay itself.

Louis Rossman reported that banks were doing this openly (explicitly saying they only allow applications from existing account holders). They have now removed that but nothing is preventing them from doing it behind closed doors anyways.


>Call me skeptic but it's likely that banks prioritized applications of companies that have significant debt with the bank.

They certainly did, on April 3 the day the program started of the 4 big banks only Bank of America began accepting applications with restrictions to applicants (example: must be an account holder and have pre-existing loans with the bank).

BOA was already sued by business owners in attempt to get court order to force BOA to open up the application process to everyone, and the Judge already ruled the banks have freedom to prioritize their own customers on any basis they like because the CARES Act did not prohibit the banks in anyway from doing so.

Now there have been multiple lawsuits against multiple banks, here is a link to one of the Judge's orders denying the restraining order against BOA: https://www.pierceatwood.com/sites/default/files/Order%20den...

In short the banks with get an automatic 5% of the total $350B, plus of those loans that don't get forgiven, the banks can sell them on the secondary market. So as you point out the Banks basically got $17.5B to lend money to businesses that already owe them money.


Apart from what you mentioned and cleaning up their balance sheets, the commission total was higher for larger loan requests.

It was probably the same work to process a larger amount than a smaller one, so they were incentivized to do larger ones first. They had 5% total for the lower loans and 3% for up to 200k, but if its the same work - you do the higher ones regardless of your commission %. The average loan across the board was about 200k from what I last saw.

Should have been a flat fee. And they probably should have prevented businesses from getting a PPP loan from your current bank so they didn't have that incentive to discriminate and clean up any prior non-Covid related debt.

Chase lied about reviewing applications sequentially. We were early on April 6th. Never heard anything until this morning when they emailed saying funds were gone. Since they didn't update anyone, it probably made it easier to discriminate. If you were #1 and didn't get a loan, then they'd have to tell you that you were denied if they were really going sequential and fair, and not discriminating. I won't be surprised if there's a class action fired up.

Just one crazy example - Chase funded 20M to Ruth's Chris as they got around the 500 employee limit with a size standard loophole. I don't know anyone who gets takeout steaks. Nor will people be buying a lot of them when they can even open back up again. So dumb.

There was no way to know if your loan was looked at, if it was ever submitted to the SBA by Chase or any way to withdraw your application. And since the SBA said not to do multiple applications, Chase screwed over a lot of people.

Just last week I had a fraud alert and Chase's phone service was not operational. They went completely dark. Seemed to be all hands on deck with PPP, cleaning up balance sheet and getting that easy money in commissions.


If you submitted the application as an owner of the business with your SSN/TIN then you should see a business loan inquiry from the SBA on your credit report. Use CreditKarma if you need to check your report for free.


I checked that and also Experian. No inquiry.


Also worth considering that this program, by design, under-cut bank's own business loan offerings. That's why we see a lot of small "customer focused" banks offer it, and a lot of the big ones drag their feet long enough for the program to run out of money.

They don't /want/ companies to get a loan this way, they want companies to get a bank loan. No doubt they'll be spamming all failed applicants with offerings of "discount" bank loans soon.


I don't think this is fully accurate. They wanted CERTAIN companies to get these loans for sure. They got to make easy commissions and give free money to companies that owe them money. But yes, they got a ton of free leads AND incredibly valuable business information which they can use to sell services later.


Absolutely. Bank of America pretty much stated that explicitly, they prioritized exactly the customers who had outstanding credit debt with BofA. How this stuff passes ethical muster is beyond me.


Ethics flow from the top down, and we have a serious lack of interest in ethics from our political and business leaders.


Ah there it is. The cui bono angle that explains this boondoggle. Not at all surprising. The guys on top always win.


[flagged]


[flagged]


Behavior like firing the IG overseeing the program?

https://apnews.com/cc921bccf9f7abd27da996ef772823e4


Same exact experience. All we've received is a loan reference number.


One twist in my case was, the Chase webapp gave me an error page on about page 5 of the wizard interface, where you upload your payroll documentation. The webapp had no state persisted -- any error and you have to start the whole 25-minute process again. I started again at the beginning, but it errored again at the same spot.

Behind the error message I could make out the text of what appeared to be the ordinary final page of the form. The the error pane was a translucent overlay over the functioning form. I opened Chrome debugger, identified the element, and set its style to "display: none". Et voila: the glorious final page of the form, where I was able to tick off several attestations and press "Submit". About 10 hours later, I received the "application received" message.

You're Chase Bank. You have about 3 days to assemble a webapp that will accept bazillions of hits. You won't have any time to shake it down. Why in the name of Salmon P. Chase do you build a javascript-laden behemoth with a slick wizard interface with page transitions, that has a session timer but no persisted saved state (of any use to the user), using XHR file uploads, the combination of all that hot code bound to fail on any browser but Chrome (it failed to get to page 1 using Firefox)?

They could have built a plain old HTML single-page form with a POST action that would upload all the attachments. It could even have had wonderful CSS to support the branding they feel they must have. The whole thing could have run on Apache hosts with a CGI handler. Seriously.


I run a small engineering consulting firm (traditional engineering, not CS/programming) based in Massachusetts, with 13 employees spread across 5 states. Most of our work comes from consulting for state and Federal agencies on large transportation and industrial projects, with lots of small stuff sprinkled in. We do our banking with a mid-sized east coast regional bank, and we have an account representative assigned to us.

When we first heard whispers about the program, we reached out to our banker who responded that they had heard the same whispers but didn't have anything concrete to tell us. The bank suggested that we start gathering financial paperwork (as government contractors we tend to need those statements to respond to audits, so this was easy for us.)

During the first week of April, our bank sent us the preliminary application form, told us to look it over and make sure we have everything we need. A week later the program officially opened, but since SBA hadn't offered specific guidance, the bank wasn't accepting applications yet.

On the morning of April 6, our bank opened the "official" portal to take applications. We immediately jumped into it, only to find the portal had a couple of show-stopping bugs and some of the instructions were ambiguous. Our frazzled representative told us that the bugs were being worked on and to keep trying. We did, and we were able so successfully submit out application later that afternoon.

While on a walk on Easter Sunday, we got an unofficial email from our banker that the application had been approved, which was followed up by a more official email yesterday. No word yet on when the money will actually hit our bank account.

I presume that our relationship with our bank helped things go smoothly. While we weren't 100% sure that we submitted the right documents for everything, the bank has most of our financial info through other dealings so they may have been able to check all the right boxes.


> I presume that our relationship with our bank helped things go smoothly.

Hah most banks I saw explicitly told people not to email about PPP loans, never mind unofficial courtesy status updates!


Apparently instructions are for the common plebes. :-P


We bank with Wells Fargo, who was of no help until after the PPP ran out.

So we applied with 6 different banks, all small around the country. that didn't work.

Found and applied to a very small bank in rural MN (where we are) and got a person on the phone finally. Submitted to SBA after 7 days, and then got a SBA loan number and approval on 4/14 (just before it ran out).

Now they said I won't be able to close on the loan and get the money until 4/24.

I don't even know what the takeaway is at this point.


I have to ask, why does anyone use wells fargo any more?


Apparently for us we take ACH payments from our customers and disburse payroll through our WF account we’ve had for over two decades.

When I asked why continue banking with them after the scandal: “we did have fraudulent accounts opened but nothing was charged, so that wasn’t a big deal”

Hopefully the lack of response from PPP from WF will finally convince my company to switch banks.


>> Now they said I won't be able to close on the loan and get the money until 4/24.

Is they WellsFargo? WellsFargo said they won't be able to close the loan until 4/24?


No we got approved through the small bank. Wells Fargo has been uninvolved.


Yes, what you're describing is incredibly common. What we're hearing is that small community banks were most successful at actually getting this money into the hands of businesses, whereas the large banks were fairly slow. (And many startup-specific banks were just completely unprepared for it.)

My advice is: continue to work with your lender to get your application squared away so that it's fully ready to be submitted to the SBA as soon as additional funds are allocated (since I can't imagine that those will last long either.)

(In the interest of full disclosure, I'm Pilot's CEO. We don't do anything with PPP loans directly but it's an area of significant interest to our customer base, so we've been following it closely and have been pretty regularly releasing updates like this one from yesterday: https://pilot.com/blog/the-ppp-has-run-out-of-money-now-what...)


Wells Fargo didn’t open up the application process for us UNITL THE DAY THE FUND RAN OUT.

We had everything prepared thanks to Gusto and submitted. But it may not matter because they had us wait to the point of it no longer being available. We’re laying people off starting Monday. :/


As someone stated earlier large banks like these most likely gave out loans to existing debtors so they could pay them back and so they could make a healthy fee on paying themselves back.


Wells Fargo is just awful. Mechanics is a local community bank so not for everybody, but we moved our business checking out of Wells Fargo and to them in 2017 and have never looked back.


Yeah, we tried to apply with a local credit union and a local bank right after the announcement. Both said they'd prioritize their internal customers before processing ours and we've heard nothing since from either.

While being with a local bank would have helped (especially if we had any debt with them), their behavior doesn't put me in a big rush to give them business either.

I've never been naive, but the way America responded to this was with blatant corruption, and it's truly disheartened me. We've shown who we are in a very real way, and I say "we" because we're all complicit and responsible for it.


>> but the way America responded to this was with blatant corruption

America is far too incompetent to plan for corruption in times like this. Just assume stupidity when it comes to bureaucracy. That was definitely the case here.


Somehow there's always a lot less "incompetence" and "stupidity" when it comes to getting money out the door for huge companies.


It's the combination of bureaucratic incompetence (the banks) and savvy malice (the large companies and rich individuals figuring out how to game the system and pick up some cash cheap).


The average Joe should not be held complicit for this. I think there is a general understanding what a problem this kind of corruption is but effectively no way for most people to resist it without undertaking extraordinary personal risk or expense. They're also very effectively propagandized into believing one side or the other will fix the problem if we can just get them enough power.


I personally strongly disagree with this. It's my opinion that what people need to do more of is to own responsibility, not avoid it, even if the only realistic capability we have is philosophical. Without the basis of a belief that WE are responsible, we are robbed of its feeling of ownership, and we'll never move toward anything permanently good for any of us.

If it's one thing America needs more of, it's to stop scapegoating everything we can point the finger at and get back to working together knowing that it's OURS to fix.

*Rant over

The rest of your comment I agree with, but we have to start with a different belief system (I think anyway) before we'll ever be any good at the rest.


Agree with all your points here. We all have to pitch in to have a real hope of unplugging and reconstructing the system.


Thanks for sharing. Here's my experience.

I went through a similar process with Bank of America. I submitted my application on Friday when it opened. Then documents. A few days later, I got a call from a Bank of America representative. He asked if I had any issues. The rep tried to verify our business information. I spent some time trying to verify that he's not a scammer. I'm from Washington. He's in Colorado. He told me he's a mortgage banker. :) He's polite, but he has no idea about my application status. He just got assigned to reach out. I told him I uploaded the docs after lots of confusion. But I think I got it. The rep told me that I can't call him for information on the application. :)

On April 15, I received an email asking for business information. The email said, login, click "I'm ready" and fill out the required information. I tried to verify that it's a legit email. I avoid clicking on the link. :) I have no idea what the required information is. I logged into my business account, but not prompted "I'm ready" button. I spent 30 minutes looking around for the button. :) I found that I need to update my account information and promptly did.

On April 16, I saw the news that PPP is out of money. I'm worried. I log in to my business account again. This time, I got prompted the "I'm ready" button. I filled out the required information about our business.

I haven't seen anything after that.

There're a lot of people that I can get mad at, the virus, the rep, the bank, the state, the government, China. At this point, I don't think those things matter. Stay safe.


There is so much going wrong right now. The result of a sudden influx of money obviously will come with issues, but I feel that a lot of the money is going to big companies with cash in the banks, and not enough to smaller ones.

In a similar vein, my university recently received 38 million dollars through the cares act, half of which is required to be distributed directly to students. The administration has not said a word about that money, but has confirmed we still need to pay fees for services that we cannot use anymore, like the shuttles or the gym.

I never really thought about corruption in the United States before this.


Bullshit Jobs describes this type of corruption pretty darn well imo. Whenever there is a big pile of money it entire industries pop up on how to get that money in the form of fees. It's a similar phenomenon to class action lawsuits and how if you're a plaintiff you're lucky if you get a $10 check in the mail two years later.


Global measurements of "corruption" will often put the United States very far down the list because there is relatively little outright illegal bribery and horse trading. Instead, all our corruption is done legally and with the government's full blessing.


It's a mess, we have 10+ employees and are trying to get ~250K via Chase. We got in early, but the whole process is opaque, and now they're run out of money before our application was approved. Can probably survive another 4-6 weeks before layoffs, so hopefully they approve more cash early next week.


The bill seems ill-thought out since as a general stimulus there was not enough to go around. For the amount they offered they should have targeted those that needed it or increased it so that it actually has an impact.

Even the EIDL which was meant for affected businesses ran out and there was a paltry amount in there too.


Democrats have blocked a quick re-up of the funding.

They're using it as leverage for funding elsewhere and more restrictions on lenders.

IMO they should allow the funding now and give Republicans an olive branch like Republicans gave them with the last phase.

It's really not the time for politics and playing the leverage game looks bad.

I don't see why no one is mentioning this. It's wrong when both sides do things like this.


Plenty of people are mentioning it, it's all over the news.

There was also plenty given to Republicans, when in the Senate they managed to include yet another tax giveaway costing $90 billion for 2020 alone. The benefits will almost entirely be received by millionaires and billionaires.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2020/04/14/coronavir...

Personally I see it hard for Democrats to want to just up the amount in the fund without a strategy for distribution. Add in the executive branch immediately doing everything they can to undermine congressional and Inspector General oversight over these funds, we will have a repeat of TARP where large corporations were able to find all the bailouts they needed while SMBs were hung out to dry.


I meant mentioning it here.

I don't care about what sides did what when.

I care that this program that was successfully lending money out has been allowed to dry up and is being used as leverage.

Up the fund once more because it's being distributed too well, then start working on any restrictions you'll need on the future funding.


"I don't care about what sides did what when." This is the opposite of accountability. And when politicians know that you won't keep them accountable and that they can keep doing whatever shit they want because "you don't care about which side does what", well, don't be surprised if things don't end up the way you want them to be.


Who cares what the Republicans did a week ago, who cares what the Dems did a week ago.

I care the Dems are blocking the funds to a program that was helping small businesses.

I'm holding them accountable right now. Do you agree with their stance?


> I'm holding them accountable right now.

Why should they care? They just have to wait a week.


A week is a lifetime for some businesses.


The entire point is that we have no evidence that this program is "successfully lending money out". It's lending money out, yes, but with paltry oversight and no ability for the taxpaying public to verify that it's achieving its intended aims.


There is no evidence the program was successful because the administration gutted the IG and oversight. All we know is that a lot of tax payer money was given out with no accountability. I hope the Democrats don't give out another blank check with no accountability. The Trump admin ignored oversight in the first bill; why give this administration another blank check for graft and corruption?


It takes two to block, and I've heard that Trump is actually OK with the extra funding from the Democrats...


It takes one to extort. It's perfectly reasonable to criticize the Democrats for using this as an opportunity to exert political pressure.

Yes the Republicans could cave to their demands, but that doesn't mean the Dems aren't extorting the situation.


Once we saw chase was moving so slow we switched our application to smaller bank and got approved right before they ran out of funds. We were lucky to get our money, but the process seemed to be a mess.


Yes we listened to the SBA about not applying to multiple banks and it screwed us. Was your smaller bank a local bank? Regional? Credit union?


Keep applying. Don't give up.

If you have an application in process, keep it going. If your bank is still taking applications, file one.

Most members of Congress agree that the CARES Act small business programs should get more funding. But they are dragging their feet on a bill because of other topics and ideas that could get attached to it.

The more un-fulfilled applications there are waiting for funds, the more heat that banks and trade associations can put on Congress to move fast. It demonstrates the dire need.

And if more funds are allocated, banks will likely start disbursing them first to applications that are already in the queue.

You should absolutely be contacting your House representative and Senators about this. Call their office, tweet @ them, send them emails. Tell them to pass a bill on Monday to fix this.

https://www.house.gov/representatives/find-your-representati...

https://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_...


We applied within 15 minutes of our bank, First Republic, opening up applications on April 3rd. Just today we got a notification they were unable to submit it before funds ran out. Horrible experience and terrible customer service.


Really sorry to hear that, I have a retail checking account with them and would have thought First Republic would have been one of the most on-the-ball.


We’re FRB customers too. Their excuse was that they weren’t originally set up to be an SBA lender. They were communicative during the inquiry process, but obviously had no idea what was going on.


Similar story here and with many of our customers. It's been radio silence with larger banks (Chase) and community banks.

It's rumored that, just like how BofA prioritized companies with active business loans, other banks are giving money to ensure their loan customers can continue to pay existing loans.


(Throwaway account, YMMV) We applied on 4/8 and received our PPP on 4/15.

We have almost 40 employees and bank with Chase and Wells but we realized early on that the big money-center banks were a couple of steps behind are were going to be overwhelmed.

We started by looking at the full list of PPP banks and identifying the most tech-savvy of the bunch https://heavy.com/news/2020/04/apply-payroll-protection-prog...

Eventually after applying with a few we got furthest with by applying via Kabbage and SmartBizLoans. Our company had an existing relationship w/these lenders and they seem to be the most tech-conscious of the bunch.

Our application via SmartBizLoans was approved on 4/13 and the funds deposited on 4/15. SmartBizLoans acts as a broker to a number of smaller banks which might explain why they were quicker. AMA, glad to help.


All the horror stories in this thread make me wonder why these banks were allowed to be (profiting) middlemen in this lending program at all.


With my wife's business we applied with Bank of America in the morning as soon as applications opened. They were one of the first banks to offer the loan. Like OP, the next day they asked us to fill out their template PDF which asked for the same information we had already provided. We did that ASAP.

Didn't hear anything else after that.

For my company we went through Chase the same day when it was available. They never asked for any information. We called, they said it was being processed. Still no info.

I have a few other friends who own businesses and none have received the loan. The only person I know that received the loan went through a local bank in New Mexico. I think the big banks just prioritized the really large loans > $1M.


Banks will receive fees based on the loan amount. The fee % does decrease at higher values but given each loan has to be manually processed by a member of the bank staff, it would make sense to process a small number of larger loans in the short time window to maximize fees.


Many banks were waiting to process the loans until the guidance settled down. Even the application form changed after the program officially launched. Guidance from the Treasury Department on how to apply and underwrite was a moving target for several days into the program launching.

Our bank said they were still doing diligence on all applications upfront before submitting the loans to the SBA even though the bank isn't actually liable for anything. This was causing about a 2 day lag time from starting to process the loan application to submitting it to the SBA. In our case that meant not getting the loan submitted before the funding ran out.


Not in US, but one of my friend who owns a US small business did attempt to apply in order to save his company, no dice.

Let's just say this thing is one of the biggest scandal in the history of modern USA. Clearly some banks did favour some "small businesses" over others by restricting application dates.


A bigger scandal is why in almost all countries the financial industry uniquely requires one to go through private companies to access government resources.

Its as weird as if their were no government run schools.


> his thing is one of the biggest scandal in the history of modern USA. Clearly some banks did favour some "small businesses" over others by restricting application dates.

Regretful, but now imagine what is going on here in Europe where these loans and funds are government-issued and plenty of them go lost in the ways of systemic corruption, tax-payed funded.


Louis Rossmann covered this recently:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yP4rodsK41E&t=648s


Who is this and why should we care?


Your comment could literally apply to any content, created by anyone.

The person in question has a relatively large YouTube following, his small business provides services for computing, phone and laptop devices including general recovery and board repair.

He's also acted as an independent advocate for right to repair legislation at his own expense.

He was specifically affected by the PPP process and the fact that the larger banks prioritized their larger leveraged customers rather than the small businesses the legislation was really meant to help.


A small business owner in NYC that has a huge youtube following


Appeal to authority, much? The content can't stand on its own?


I'm a sole prop, and followed almost exactly this timeline, along with resubmitting the same information. Bank of America for me, but they're using an external service to manage the process https://services.intralinks.com/, it seems strange it can't be managed thru their own online banking.

Haven't heard anything, not expecting anything, it's pretty discouraging...


I use Bank of America too and so far crickets.


Chase Bank client. Received a text from our relationshiop manager 1:20pm PST to apply on Portal. Submitted prelim application 10 mins later. Received loan approval Midnight of April 15. Funds in the bank account April 17.


I helped my mom do her PPP paperwork.

She submitted on the first day that US Bank allowed applications. She then spent the next 4 days going back and Forth with US Bank over her paperwork. She had a loan approval from US Bank, and then...nothing.

...until Wednesday, when she got an email saying that the funding had ran out.

My mom plans on keeping her staff employed while they work from home for as long as she can, but, she had enough money to run payroll on the 15th, and will probably not have enough money to run payroll at the end of the month -- hospitals have stopped having elective surgeries, and many of them are 60+ days behind on their bills right now.

I know that the banks were hammered with applications and there are a lot of people who are in the same situation as her. I'm hoping that when they add funding to the program, that businesses like hers (who were approved provisionally, but ran out of money) would be processed first.


So is the answer:

Applied with a big bank, get nothing.

Applied with a small bank, got lucky if you applied early on April 3rd

?

Edit: we applied with a small bank at 6am on the 3rd and got funds earlier this week.



When they said first come first serve on Thursday 4/2 with the opening on Friday 4/3, we spent most of the day getting our paperwork done for the submission on that Thursday. Including copies of a whole year of payroll and all the other backup material. We had our paperwork in to Texas Bank and Trust that Friday morning. They worked on the SBA side and sent an email to us on Saturday that the SBA had changed the terms from .5% to 1% interest rate with some other changes about contractors and such and updated the signoff sheet. On early Monday we signed the loan agreement with those changes and by 4:30 p.m. they said we had been approved by the SBA. Then on Thursday 4/9 the money showed up in our bank account. I want to publicly acknowledge the outstanding work the Texas Bank and Trust team performed to get our relief money. For 2 weeks we sent everyone home fully paid. We are slowly ramping up but everyone is being paid their full salaries / 40 hours for the whole time they are at home self quarantining. This is how the program was supposed to work.


My bank called me and asked if I knew about the PPP and wanted to apply. My bank never calls me for anything. I was actually skeptical it was my bank at all, but some verification afterwards checked out that it was legit (but was still weird). I said "No, I'm doing OK". He said "that's good - have a nice day". No idea why they were doing PPP outreach - I'd have figured it would all be earmarked or gone in a couple of days anyway - there's no need to try to 'drum up' business.


Do you have a large loan with your bank?


nope. small biz checking, that's it.


I figured corporate red tape would be the hardest problem and that the program would be over-subscribed. So I "signed up" at Chase and 2 local banks recommended by my accountant and let the best one win...

Sure enough, the local bank (Quantum National Bank) in GA, got back to me with an application to fill out before Chase even had a "form" to register interest in the program. They had a plan, and their banker was responsive via phone and email. It was pleasantly not a bad process at all.

We signed our closing papers today.


Why on earth did anyone think that it would be good, or efficient, to go through a multitude of private companies in order to access public resources?

And why on earth do you still use cheques?


Submitted to PNC (here near Pittsburgh) the day it opened, got bounced a few days later with slightly incomplete form filling.

I stupidly dragged my feet in re-submitting, given all the steps required. Finally got it re-submitted yesterday, just as they announced the well's run dry.

PNC kindly got back to me today (via phone) and had me add one more piece of missing info, in readiness for the next wave of funding (if that happens).

Now I wonder if I had responded immediately last week if it might have made it under the wire. I guess who knows?


I submitted our application on April 6. I got a confirmation number from my bank on the same day. My bank put up a status system on April 10. I check it every 4-8 hours. It's always "In Review". They did ask me for more details on our payroll, but it didn't apply. I sent an email with that update. Nothing since. My bank is PNC. Very unimpressed with their efforts/communication on this. But, it sounds like most large banks have not been very good about it.


The day before applications were to open, I called the guy at a local community bank (we bank with Wells Fargo which at the time just had a web page saying "don't even think about it"). This guy was very helpful which was handy because at the time the official communications were vague and internally inconsistent. Anyway I came away with the distinct impression that it had already been decided who was to receive these loans.


I've been told by some well-placed people (pooh pooh me if you want, I don't care), that a number of PE shops and hedge funds were able to get some pretty big loans to the top of the pile. Many, many, many businesses are in your situation. A very large percentage of the money went places you and I probably wouldn't think it "should" go. The program isn't working.


I know of two egregious examples:

1) a private university near me with multiple thousand students, and nearly 1,000 employees (faculty and the like) "tweaking" their payroll numbers to exclude adjuncts, TAs, student employees and such, so they could claim they were a "small business"

2) a startup who closed a $25M round of funding in March, has no product/revenue as yet, and works 100% remote, talks of having a 14 month runway, got a fairly large check "because they're offering money, we should take it" (regardless of need)


Aren't both of those illegal or breaking the agreement? Wouldn't it be better to report them?


Here in the western USA, I recall distinctly that washington mutual (before death) changed the order of check clearing in my account, to create an overdraft and charge fees on multiple checks .. just before Christmas 2007 iir.. other info in YNews about the PPP suggests that companies with current financing open (product-less dot-com) got money, while others (on main street) wait in queues ..


Absolutely. I deposited a check at an ATM in the evening. The next morning, I made the usual transactions, Starbucks, grocery store, fuel, a few others during the day. Despite everything looking fine in online banking I got slapped with $315 in overdraft fees for "9 overdraft transactions" that next day. F WaMu.


11 employees, monthly payroll under 100k we applied the moment the program was opened by our bank (April 3rd). We knew the funds would go fast so we put our all into getting our application info in as soon as possible. I suppose it must have helped because we closed this week - got final paperwork on the 15th and funds yesterday (the 16th).


SBA has issued a report on PPP loan approvals through 4/16: https://www.sba.gov/sites/default/files/2020-04/PPP%20Deck%2...

The highlights of the report:

* 1.6 million loans worth $342 billion approved through 4,975 lenders

* California, Texas and New York accounted for 23% of the loans, more than $82 billion. (see Reuters graphic: https://fingfx.thomsonreuters.com/gfx/editorcharts/qmypmrzyv...)

* Number of loans approved per 1,000 small businesses was the highest for rural states (see Reuters graphic: https://fingfx.thomsonreuters.com/gfx/editorcharts/xlbpgxaov...)

* A breakdown of loans per industry shows that construction and manufacturing firms were awarded loan amounts disproportionately higher than the share of employees in that sector. (See Reuters graphic: https://fingfx.thomsonreuters.com/gfx/editorcharts/qzjvqlbop...)

* The top lender processed $14 billion in loans across 27,307 businesses, with $515,304 average loan amount.

* The lender with the most number of loans processed $2.9 billion to 40,746 businesses with $72,803 average loan amount.

More analysis here: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-usa-le...


1099. Applications weren't open until April 10th for us.

My local credit union is not SBA. I applied through a few online brokers; got word a few days ago my application was approved and sent to the underwriter. Later that day it was announced all the funding was dry.


We submitted through PNC. Their online portal didn't work the first few days, so we finally got it in Apr 8.

Never any updates, not even a confirmation email.

Checking the status today, looks like they never got through processing and submitting to SBA. So looks like we missed the boat.


We also bank with Mechanics. Submitted our application on Sunday the 5th. Called many times and they kept saying they can't give us status. Was patient most of the time with them but I wish we were not. The story is too long but I can tell you that they were not processing applications first come first serve. Finally got someone to look at our application and now its in underwriting. Hoping congress passes phase 2. We will be moving from Mechanics. 45+ people on payroll didn't let anyone go in anticipation of us getting the funds. Did everything I could to give them all the information they needed within minutes of them asking. I was always fist in line.


I applied on 9th and had no significant update except about funds running out. The only people that I know who got it applied on the 5th or 6th (in all practical terms the actual launch day was the 5th).

It’s very likely that the allocated funds actually ran out within 1-2 days of applications.

The allocated funds were so paltry that whether you got it or not was based on luck. If you happened to pick a good bank with a short queue or good processing, or if your own bank prioritized you, then you were in luck. In my case our application didn’t even get reviewed the whole time, and the applying only one time rule blocked us from seeking some better bank.


> My wife and I run a small winery

Where can I buy a case?


Where do you live? :-) We unfortunately had spun down our DTC sales not long before this damn thing hit, but if you're in one of our markets (Bay Area, LA, Seattle, Portland, Montreal, Chicago, NYC, ME, MA, or NC) then you can probably find our stuff in the right local shop. Inconnu, Lalalu, Kitsune, and Papa JaJa are our brands.

We're looking into ways to get DTC back up and running now though, looks like lots of beverage sales have switched to that channel.


Ah sorry I'm over in the UK and I can't see an importer.

Now's a great time for DTC though. I've been buying wine to be delivered and I don't usually do that, and actually it's encouraging me to be more adventurous in my choice, so there's an opportunity here.


I forgot, we're actually in the UK too! 266 Wines imports our stuff but I don't know if they sell to any wine shops or just restaurants. We'll probably never be able to do DTC to the UK though :-(


Thanks yes they're selling direct to consumer now due to the emergency.


Just an employee, not an owner so I don't know the actual details of it, all I know is that my company successfully got it (or is confirmed to get it?). Next week accounting will be laying out the details of it for all the other employees. I don't really know anything more than we received confirmation on Wednesday and the people in accounting say it's good news for us.

We're a software firm that does contract work for airlines, so that may have also helped out?


The SBA has set the interest rate on the loans to a very low level. Low interest on a house isn't bad b/c it can go 15-30 years and has closing costs. A low interest rate short term loan probably doesn't cover the legwork for the banks to manage it. So they really don't want to. And even though the govt is securing them, it is even more paperwork when a bunch of companies default and need to be processed.


Not the answer to OP's question so apologies—but does anyone have insight on how PPP funds were actually distributed to banks across the nation? i.e. were banks given specific allotments of the total capital pool that they could distribute to their clients... or was there a general SBA FIFO queue that each bank simply had to submit their clients' applications to once they processed them internally?


Sole proprietor here, crickets from my bank as well except some initial emails redirecting me to their PPP website signup.

The general sentiment in this thread seems to be that large banks absolutely suck for a bunch of reasons.

What would happen if I apply for the same loan through some other smaller local bank or credit union? As long as I only accept the loan through one place, it should be fine, right?


I went with USBank. Small loan, under 50k. I'm a C Corp, one employee. They had issues (system wasn't up the first day was what I was told) but was approved on Wednesday, received money Thursday.

I'm amazed it went as well as it did. Government bureaucracy isn't designed to try new things or deal with bumps in the road as they appear.


We deal with a smaller, local bank (just has one branch) and submitted the application through them exactly one week ago.

We were able to get the loan amount in our account earlier this week.

We're ~30 employees (~$7M annual revenue) located in the Midwest. I wasn't directly involved with the application, however.

Sorry to hear of the troubles you're going through, these are not easy times.


> Now I'm reading reports that the program is already out of money

Correct, I received an email from Intuit today stating that the loan volume has been hit: https://i.judge.sh/ashamed/Derpy/chrome_YyblB6Znpm.png


Applied through WellsFargo and haven't heard anything yet. Did get what might have been spam from a financial company using Kabbage to handle the paperwork. Considered trying that route as well but had read "only one application allowed". That plus the possibility it was a scam kept me from doing that.


Some notes:

1) If the SBA received your application then you should see a inquiry on your credit report. CreditKarma is a good free choice to check your report.

2) Chase and other big banks added additional language to their loan contracts that allows them to sue for defaults. Read the terms carefully before signing.


Company I work for the president of the company said he applied the first day and since have been approved.


Moral of the story: Rely less on government assistance and vote for less taxes and regulations.


Wells Fargo. Did not accept applications until a week in. Ran out of money after 10 Billion since they were still under an asset cap because of their past frauds. To this day I have no idea if I will be approved or not. 0/10 would not recommend.


Wells Fargo. I was early in their application process (just a simple 5q web form) like 10+ days ago. 3 days ago I submitted full application. All I've gotten are daily emails that report they are still processing the queue.


My personal bank, First Republic, accepted my application even though I run my business as self-employed and they normally require a "real" business account. Got the app in on April 8, crickets since.


How long have you been a customer?


How long have you been doing business with first Republic Bank?


about 15 years, just the one account. And I'm sure my account isn't much more than a roundoff error compared with most of their business.


I applied the day application opened as well as for the EIDL. No luck with either.


Unfortunately, if your loan was not already approved by your bank it's too late to receive a CARES loan as the (initial?) money ran out Wednesday, barring an expansion of the program.


What matters is SBA approval, the bank’s approval is a separate matter and can lag behind SBA by a few days, due to the massive backlog of applications.

I received notice my application was submitted to SBA Wednesday morning, right after they ran out of money. I thought I missed the cutoff, but was approved Thursday afternoon. So there’s a lot of uncertainty.

The whole process is a mess and everyone is suffering, I really expect additional SBA funding will be approved soon. My understanding is that members of congress are holding out for hospital funds before allocating more to SBA.


The bank's approval is the primary approval that matters, since the banks only submitted PPP loan applications that met their internal requirements.

Yes, I know that's not how the CARES Act was supposed to work, but that's how it actually ended up working at all of the major US banks.

Note: the SBA cutoff announcement on Wednesday was based on both the loans already approved and those in the queue for SBA approval. Loans submitted after the announcement Wednesday evening were SOL.


Wednesday was April 15 and we submitted our application on April 6. I'm especially curious whether others who submitted an application as early as we did got a similar runaround from their bank.


Unfortunately, it doesn't sound like your bank submitted your PPP loan application in time as SBA approval generally only takes a day.


same. applied very early on and did not get in. i think the banks are prioritizing certain customers or certain loan amounts over others. it's definitely not FIFO approval.


Has the SBA disclosed the extent of the data breach that they had?


Link?



On face value, this seems like a no-lose proposition. Loan forgiveness, minus 1% interest, so basically free money.

What are the downsides, theoretical or otherwise, of taking this money?


To apply you have to make certain representations that you need the money as a result of COVID-related disruptions and will use it only for certain purposes, and one is at least theoretically criminally liable for filing a false statement if that's not the case. Also, you only get the loan balance forgiven if it goes to payroll (must be at least 75% of the total), rents, and utilities.


There are very few downsides. You just have to make sure you follow the program guidelines. For example 75% has to go to payroll, only 25% can go to other expenditures such as rent or debt interest.

People are understandably worried about the money having already been exhausted for the program. This isn't going to be the last round they do, for either individuals or small businesses.


Systemic moral hazard, zombie companies enabled to continue to engage in more over capacity at a time when demand is falling off the cliff side, etc.

C17H19NO3 for those who don't know they're in the hospice yet.

Things most of my fellow americans dont give a shit about though lol Oh well, don't live stateside so meh.


We applied the opening day with The BoA, got nothing.

It’s all very frustrating.


Submitted EIDL for last week. Not sure what our chances are but have not received any update as of yet.


I'm sure you're aware of PPP, but it's the more advantageous program (by far). EIDL grants were reduced to $1k/employee, instead of the flat $10k/company. EIDL interest rates are higher, the grants are smaller, and if you eventually enroll in PPP, you'll have to reconsolidate your EIDL debt with the new bank.

Better to ignore the status of your EIDL application and apply for PPP, in the hope the program gets additional funding. (Both EIDL and PPP are out of funds, at the moment.)


Yea, ended up putting in a submission for PPP at the end of last week.

Thanks for the heads up though! Didn't see it till just now...


Have you tried calling the Federal Reserve directly? Oh wait, that only works for Hedge Fund managers.


Process was very smooth with our local bank in North Dakota. Was funded yesterday.


No pre-existing substantial obligations to the bank? no loan.


I just got an email from Chase saying they are out of monies. :[


It’s out of money as of today


It's not.


Approved!


At first I thought it's about loans for dialup internet which uses PPP.




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