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Over the course of 2013, small businesses across the United States started to see the economy turn back in their favor. After several years of stagnation due to the Great Recession, enterprises throughout the country commenced spending and expansion plans, as they looked to capitalize on more favorable economic conditions.

In fact, The Business Journals reported that data from the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) found that 64 percent of small businesses spent money on furniture, new equipment and fixtures during December 2013. That mark represented the highest post-recession number recorded, according to the source. Also, startups added an average of more than 0.2 employees in that period, a level not seen since February 2006.

While these factors show that small businesses are becoming comfortable enough to ramp up their spending, the outlook is mixed when it comes to growth opportunities. Despite more capital outlays, The Business Journals noted that sales were largely unchanged in the last month, and profits actually declines at the majority of businesses. More importantly, more than half of NFIB members believe now is not the time to expand their operations.

It’s a curious dynamic, with startups increasing spending, while also indicating a conservative and hesitant attitude regarding expansion. The reason for the mixed signals is due to potential political upheaval and new regulations that will change how small businesses in American operate.

“The national debt continues to rise with another fight to increase the debt ceiling looming once again,” NFIB Chief Economist Bill Dunkelberg said in a statement. “The uncertainty that has contributed to our slow recovery is clearly still present – making any advances shaky at best.”

ABN reduces cost of expansion

For small businesses looking to grow in 2014, these economic and political trends may be a barrier to completing such tasks. Although spending is often viewed as a way to help a company progress, the fact that sales are stagnating means that businesses could cut into their profit margin by expanding this year.

However, by using promotional discounts on office supplies, car rentals, technology equipment and other small businesses services and products, startup leaders can limit their expenditures during an uncertain economy. With ABN membership, Americans entrepreneurs can keep more money in their pockets, enabling them to go ahead with their expansion plans for 2014.

Although economic conditions are in flux throughout the country, holding back on long-term growth initiatives can force executives to adjust their business plans, often forcing them to rethink their entire enterprise. For this reason, saving money with ABN coupon codes could prove to be the tool small companies need to stay the course in the coming year.