Currently, new US banks are being created at the slowest pace in 50 years, which likely could reduce availability of credit to small businesses. Since 1990, the average rate of new bank formation was about 100 per year. However, since 2010, this rate has slipped to approximately 3 per year, as you can see from the graph below from the Richmond Fed. The last time it was even close to this low was in 1994, but it was still well above the 3 per year rate. Most banks start small, so this decline in new bank formation must decrease the number of local and community banks. These types of banks often lend to small businesses, so their decline could certainly affect the distribution of credit to small and local businesses. This low formation rate could be due to low interest rates, which make it more difficult for banks to turn a profit. If this is actually the cause, then new bank formation should increase as the economy improves and the Fed raises rates again.