Monday, May 14, 2012

Study finds US immigrants more likely to start a business than non-immigrants

A recent study has found that US immigrants are more likely to start a business than native-born US citizens. The study was conducted by the Office of Advocacy of the US Small Business Administration an independent group that voices concerns from small businesses to the federal government.

The study, titled Immigrant Entrepreneurs and Small Business Owners, and their Access to Financial Capital found that 10 percent of immigrants in the US own their own business. Furthermore, nearly 20 percent of immigrant-owned businesses had USD$50,000 or more in startup capital, compared to only 15.9 percent for non-immigrant-owned businesses.

"Immigrant entrepreneurs are essential to our nation's growth and economic prosperity," said Chief Counsel for Advocacy, Winslow Sargeant. "Immigrant entrepreneurs make our nation more competitive and serve as reminders of the American dream."

The study found that roughly two-thirds of immigrant-owned businesses reported that their main source of startup capital was personal or family savings. Other commonly reported sources of startup capital by immigrant-owned businesses included credit cards, bank loans, and home equity loans. The study showed that these sources of startup capital were similar to non-immigrant-owned businesses.

The study added that immigrants have a "proclivity towards entrepreneurship" and that barriers between immigrant entrepreneurs and access to financial capital need to be removed in order to maximize the "untapped" potential of this group.

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