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Immigrant Entrepreneurship in America: Evidence from the Survey of Business Owners 2007 & 2012

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  • Sari Pekkala Kerr
  • William R. Kerr

Abstract

We study immigrant entrepreneurship and firm ownership in 2007 and 2012 using the Survey of Business Owners (SBO). The survival and growth of immigrant-owned businesses over time relative to native-founded companies is evaluated by linking the 2007 SBO to the Longitudinal Business Database (LBD). We quantify the dependency of the United States as a whole, as well as individual states, on the contributions of immigrant entrepreneurs in terms of firm formation and job creation. We describe differences in the types of businesses started by immigrants and the quality of jobs created by their firms. First-generation immigrants create about 25% of new firms in the United States, but this share exceeds 40% in some states. In addition, Asian and Hispanic second-generation immigrants start about 6% of new firms. Immigrant-owned firms, on average, create fewer jobs than native-owned firms, but much of this is explained by the industry and geographic location of the firms. Immigrant-owned firms pay comparable wages, conditional on firm traits, to native-owned firms, but are less likely to offer benefits.

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  • Sari Pekkala Kerr & William R. Kerr, 2018. "Immigrant Entrepreneurship in America: Evidence from the Survey of Business Owners 2007 & 2012," NBER Working Papers 24494, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:24494
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    Cited by:

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    3. Robert W. Fairlie & Frank Fossen, 2021. "Did the $660 Billion Paycheck Protection Program and $220 Billion Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program Get Disbursed to Minority Communities in the Early Stages of COVID-19?," NBER Working Papers 28321, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. William R. Kerr & Frederic Robert-Nicoud, 2020. "Tech Clusters," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 34(3), pages 50-76, Summer.
    5. Robert Fairlie, 2020. "The impact of COVID‐19 on small business owners: Evidence from the first three months after widespread social‐distancing restrictions," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 29(4), pages 727-740, October.
    6. Marlene Orozco, 2020. "Reconceptualizing the Enclave: Measuring Success Among Latino‐Owned Businesses," Social Science Quarterly, Southwestern Social Science Association, vol. 101(4), pages 1374-1396, July.
    7. Dheer, Ratan J.S. & Lenartowicz, Tomasz, 2020. "Effect of generational status on immigrants’ intentions to start new ventures: The role of cognitions," Journal of World Business, Elsevier, vol. 55(3).

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F22 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Migration
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J44 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Professional Labor Markets and Occupations
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
    • L26 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Entrepreneurship
    • M13 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration - - - New Firms; Startups
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • O32 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Management of Technological Innovation and R&D
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes
    • R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)

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