April 10, 2007 -- Minority-owned businesses accounted for 18 percent of a total 23 million U.S. firms in 2002, the Small Business Administration's Office of Advocacy reported on Tuesday.

The figures, based on the most recent Census data, are part of the agency's Minorities in Business Report, a demographic review of minority-business ownership in the United States from 1997 to 2002.

Among all minority groups, Latinos had the largest presence in the business community, owning 6.6 percent of all U.S. firms, followed by blacks at 5 percent, the report said.

Over the same period, the percentage of minority businesses owned by women has increased significantly, with 29 percent of all black-employer firms and 47 percent of black non-employer firms now owned by women. Asian-owned businesses were also growing, by 12.6 percent in number of employer firms and 25.3 percent in annual payrolls, the report found.

- next -

Published on: Apr 10, 2007