Over half of small-business owners fear coronavirus will close their operations by mid-2021

48% are generating revenues below what they needed to stay in business

A swath of small-business owners who have been fighting tooth and nail to keep their operations alive during the economic downturn fear their businesses won't make it in the new year, according to a new report.

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Only 43% of small-business owners believe they have the means to survive through June 2021, according to Alignable's Small Business Funding Needs report.

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The data, released Wednesday, showed that nearly half of all small businesses are at risk of closing by year's end.

About 48% of owners say they are generating revenues below what they needed to stay in business, a 6% increase from September, when 42% reported they were at risk.

A storefront displays a closed sign as it remains shuttered due to a COVID-19 area infection rate increase in the Far Rockaway neighborhood of the borough of Queens in New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

"It’s been nine long, frustrating months for small business owners as they’ve worked tirelessly to save their businesses, livelihoods, and the jobs of everyone they employ," Alignable CEO Eric Groves wrote in the report.

Groves noted that although droves of small-business owners took advantage of the Paycheck Protection Program -- established by Congress earlier this year to infuse businesses with the funds needed to keep employees on the payroll -- it was a short-term fix.

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Now, 87% say they need additional funds to survive with 60% admitting that the need is "critical."

To help, roughly 82% of the more than 5,000 business owners surveyed said they were looking for loans of $100,000 or less.

A pedestrian walks past a boarded up and closed luggage store in the downtown area of Portland, Oregon on July 20, 2020. (Rebecca Smeyne/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

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Businesses also said that some type of rental assistance, a short-term one-year loan with interest of about 1% or a longer-term, 30-year loan, with a 4% fixed interest rate would help.

Alignable has collected more than 556,000 business owner responses since mid-March in order to assess the recovery of small businesses across the United States and Canada.

Its latest report covered 6,300 U.S. business owner responses during the first week of December.

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