Small Businesses With Older Founders Most Likely to Survive, Report Finds

Small businesses with owners 55 years of age and older are most likely to survive, but are least likely to have employees, finds a JPMorgan Chase Institute study.

According to their findings, a firm founded by a 30-year-old has an 11.1 percent predicted probability of closing after its first year, a firm run by a 45-year-old has a 9.6 percent probability, while one founded by a 60-year-old has an 8.2 percent probability of exiting after its first year.

The report says the reason for this could be older founders have more work experience, helping them to survive the critical early years or they may have a larger network of potential clients or personal assets that could provide initial funding or cash buffers.

The study tracked data from 138,000 firms founded in 2013 and their first four years of operations, ending in February 2018.

Petting Dogs Significantly Reduces Stress Levels, Study Finds

Science proves what dog lovers already know, petting a dog can significantly reduce your stress levels.

A Washington State University study found petting cats and dogs can dramatically lower a person’s cortisol levels by analyzing how stressed college students reacted to petting animals.

The study involved 249 college students who participated in an animal visitation program. They were separated into four groups. Each group interacted with the animals differently - they were either allowed to immediately pet cats and dogs, observe others petting the animals, watch slideshows of the same animals or were put on wait list for an animal petting session.

The students’ cortisol levels were measured through saliva samples. All it took was just 10 minutes for the first group to experience lower amounts of stress.

Researchers say the results show college-based animal visitation programs provide effective stress relief.

The Poverty Rate for Widows Has Declined. Here Are the Reasons Why.

The poverty rate for widows has dropped significantly since the mid-1990s. A Center for Retirement Research at Boston College study looks at the reasons for the decline.

According to their research, three factors could have contributed to the decline: 1) The rise in women’s educational attainment; 2) The rise in women’s work experience; 3) Shifting marriage patterns, with women of higher socioeconomic status more likely to be married than those of lower socioeconomic status.

According to their study, women have become more independent as both their educational attainment and work experience have increased. By 2014, widows between the ages of 65 and 85 had an extra year and a half of education and more than 10 years of additional work experience compared to widows in 1994.

Despite this good news, researchers say widows’ poverty will continue to be much higher than that of married couples.