Today, in recognition of National Small Business Week, the Joint Economic Committee (JEC) released a new state-by-state analysis of business applications in 2021 that shows a record surge across all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
The pandemic posed significant challenges to businesses around the country, impacting families and communities nationwide. Black, Hispanic and Asian business owners were particularly affected.
The American Rescue Plan and other pandemic relief delivered more than $400 billion in direct assistance to more than six million small businesses. The Administration helped ensure equitable access for marginalized communities via the Small Business Administration Community Navigator Pilot Program, which helps local governments and organizations support entrepreneurs start their own business or access the support they need to thrive.
Among the report’s key findings:
- Americans submitted 5.4 million applications for new businesses in 2021, the most in recorded history and 68% higher than the average number of filings during the five years before the pandemic.
- Applications for the types of new business that are more likely to hire employees also reached a record high of 1.8 million in 2021 and were more than 40% higher than the average number of applications in the five years before the pandemic.
- All 50 states and Washington, D.C. had more new business applications in 2021 than the annual average in the five years before the pandemic.
- Thirty-one states and D.C. saw over 50% more applications in 2021 than over the five years before the pandemic, including six states where applications more than doubled.
“As a proud small business owner, I know that small businesses are the lifeblood of the U.S. economy, creating jobs, contributing to community development and providing pathways to wealth-building for workers and families across the country,” said JEC Chairman Don Beyer (D-VA). “The pandemic triggered the worst recession since the Great Depression, which harmed small businesses nationwide and disproportionately impacted small businesses run by Black, Hispanic and Asian business owners. But thanks to the American Rescue Plan and other pandemic relief, small businesses have come roaring back, including among those populations most impacted. In 2021, Americans submitted a record number of new business applications across all 50 states and Washington, D.C., including 131,000 in Virginia—more than 62% higher than the average number of applications in the five years before the pandemic.
“New and rebounding businesses are powering our ongoing recovery, helping to drive economic growth and shared prosperity. This National Small Business Week, we celebrate and honor the significant contributions of U.S. small businesses and entrepreneurs to our collective economic health.”
Read the full report.