While blogging today, The VAR Guy kept one eye and one ear focused on Wall Street- where the three major indexes dropped between 4% and 5% because of a U.S. credit rating downgrade. Sure, it's a painful day on Wall Street. But VARs who continue to focus on emerging market opportunities don't need to press the panic button. Here's why.

The best IT service providers -- folks like masterIT -- say revenues have been growing about 30 percent this year. No doubt, fears on Wall Street could pressure SMB technology spending in the months ahead. But are SMBs going to turn off basic IT services -- hosted email, cloud storage, security, VoIP? Absolutely not.

Yes, SMBs may stop hiring -- especially within IT departments. And The VAR Guy suspects some SMBs will halt or delay major IT projects or on-premise hardware upgrades. But those realities could open up even more opportunities for VARs and MSPs that offer outsourced IT services.

The VAR Guy certainly doesn't want to paint a rosy economic picture. Our resident blogger continues to hear concerns from his friends and neighbors -- many of whom are small business entrepreneurs who are struggling to make ends meet.

Despite some harsh economic realities, some IT trends remain undeniable. Just last week, Rackspace's CEO said demand for the company's cloud services were insatiable. Fast forward a few days and The VAR Guy suspects that Rackspace outlook remains the same -- regardless of Wall Street's steep decline.

The situation is similar for cloud storage, cloud security, mobile IT management... fast-growing markets where vendors are scrambling to line up channel partners.

Is The VAR Guy too optimistic about the SMB channel? Hmmm... maybe. Small businesses certainly are not immune to the U.S. debt downgrade. But our resident blogger has faith in his readers. Those that have pushed into managed services and cloud services -- ahead of the hype wave -- have recurring revenues upon which to stand. Those that maintain a pure focus on product refreshes could find their IT projects stalled...