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The Next America - Economy 2012 / Economy

Immigrants Twice as Likely as Natives to Start Businesses

photo of Stephanie Czekalinski
May 10, 2012

More than a quarter of all new businesses launched last year were owned by an immigrant, CNN reported on Tuesday. The foreign-born were also twice as likely as those born in the United States to start businesses.

Immigrants were more likely to have been employed in sectors, such as construction, hit hard by the recession. Bills didn't evaporate when the jobs did, so many immigrants started their own companies to pay those expenses, Rob Fairlie, a professor at the University of California (Santa Cruz), told CNN. 

The same applies to Hispanics, who are starting businesses faster than any other ethnic group, he said. 

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