Small-business lending in Los Angles County rose for the fourth year running for the 12-month period ended Sept. 30. L.A's top 25 lenders made a combined 1,676 SBA loans worth $519.6 million during the year. Lenders are ranked by the total value of loans made in L.A. County under the 7(a) program, under which the most common type of SBA loan is issued, and the 504 program, under which loans are made in cooperation with "certified development companies" (non-profits that participate with banks on SBA loans).

Bank of America is once again the leading SBA lender in L.A. County, with $80.5 million through 467 loans in fiscal 1999. U.S. Bank, formerly the Bank of Commerce, is No. 2 on the list with $73.7 million in loans.

The SBA's Los Angeles district office, which covers L.A., Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, often has the highest loan totals of any SBA office in the nation. This year, lenders doled out $754.4 million in SBA loans in the L.A. district, up from $688.7 million last year.

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