How is Black-owned Business Doing in the Trump Economy?

Leo Hickman, the founder of Classy Hippie Tea Company, has been in business for seven years. Hickman said under the current economy “there is monetary value, even if you are losing” because Trump “just put in tax breaks for owners,” the American Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, that can be written off. The American Tax Cuts and Jobs Act passed in December and will have some benefits to small business owners. The National Federation of Independent Business says small business owners will be able to file as “pass-through entities,” which allows owners to file and pay as an individual.

In addition, the NFIB says business owners can deduct up to 20 percent of claimable income. According to the NFIM, taxpayers will not have to file deductions to claim the deduction, “and may simultaneously claim this deduction and the standard deduction.” Hickman said he started his tea company after backpacking around the world. He noticed how all of the different cultures sat over tea and talked about the community, and how “from there at a community level you could activate and start changing the community.” Hickman says that although the Trump economy is helping his business the system was “not built for us.” But he believes that African Americans are not “excluded, where [they] are included is in the programs as workers and the laborer” but that “you have to figure out a way to get access to get to the other side.” Once you are there Hickman says, “There is going to be bigotry, racism, and hatred that will try to keep you where you are at… but you have to figure out how to bubble up.” Because Hickman says, “If you are going to be in this country you have to be about money.” Hickman says there are no actual losses when you can write things off, “that’s why this site is set up for them, it was built for you to take a risk.”

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