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Immigrants Launching More Businesses

A new study finds immigrant-owned businesses generate more than $60 billion every year.
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Immigrant-owned businesses generate over a tenth of all business income in the United States, according to a joint study released this week by the Small Business Administration and the Commerce Department.

The report, which was led by the SBA’s Office of Advocacy, found that businesses launched by immigrants bring in $67 billion every year, accounting for 11.6 percent of total business income across the nation. Immigrants also own 11.2 percent of businesses making over $100,000 and 10.8 percent of businesses with employees.

“These findings can make a significant contribution to public policy debates,” Chad Moutray, the advocacy office's chief economist, said in a statement.

Studies have found that immigrants are 30 percent more likely to launch a business than non-immigrants, and currently account for about 12.5 percent of all U.S. business owners.

Most foreign-born business owners are clustered in a handful of states, including California, New York, New Jersey, Florida, and Hawaii, the study found. About quarter of all business owners in New York are immigrants, compared to about a fifth in New Jersey, Florida, and Hawaii.

Though most immigrant entrepreneurs are from Mexico, the study found the highest rates of business ownership among Greeks, South Koreans, and Iranians.

Last updated: Nov 12, 2008




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