« High immigration rates for the future do not fix our aging problem | Main | The Colorado Compact »

Large share of small business owners are immigrants

A New York Times editorial summarizes the elevated role of immigrants in running small businesses in the U.S. It cites a study by the Fiscal Policy Institute.

According to the study, 28% of leisure and hospitality business owners are immigrants. They are 53% of all gas station owners and 49% of all grocery store owners. One third of small businesses in California are immigrant-owned.

The Times’ summary says that “The study found that there were 900,000 immigrants among small-business owners in the United States, about 18% of the total. This percentage is higher than the immigrant share of the overall population, which is 13%, and the immigrant share of the labor force, at 16%. Small businesses in which half or more of the owners were immigrants employed 4.7 million people in 2007, the latest year for which data were available, generating $776 billion in receipts.”

They accounted for 30 % of the growth in small businesses — those with fewer than 100 employees — between 1990 and 2010.

Immigrant entrepreneurs are concentrated in professional and business services, retail, construction, educational and social services, and leisure and hospitality. They own restaurants, doctor’s offices, real-estate firms, groceries and truck-transportation services. More of them come from Mexico than any other country, followed by Indians, Koreans, Cubans, Chinese and Vietnamese.

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)

Mail this entry to a friend

Email this entry to:

Your email address:

Message (optional):