Among the institutions that took criticism was Wells Fargo, the fourth-largest United States bank and the biggest lender to small businesses. But Marc Bernstein and Douglas Case, the bank's two top executives for small-business lending, say the criticism was misplaced. In 2010, the bank made $14.9 billion in new loans to small companies, "just shy," as Mr. Case put it, of a $16 billion goal for the year but more than the $14.5 billion it lent in 2009. In the first quarter of this year, the bank lent $3.7 billion, a 27 percent increase over the first quarter of 2010.More
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