When it comes to interest rates, watching them go up can be painful. Not knowing what they're going to do either way, though, can be even worse.
Such is the case for those who have been trying to make sense of the Fed's recent decision-making process, which has included seven years of not doing anything, then one brief moment of action followed by more indecision.
While much of the attention for rate impacts focuses on big multinational companies and Wall Street banks, small businesses face acute affects as well. Rising rates push up the U.S. dollar, giving owners more domestic purchasing power, while costlier borrowing terms can put a crimp on activity.
Mostly, though, it's the uncertainty that bothers small business.
"It's been like waiting on a curveball," said Tom Wornham, CEO at Private Bancorp of America, a San Diego-based community bank. "All of us have been managing our balance sheets, anticipating that there would be some type of an interest rate hike."