September 19, 2012

10% of Businesses Employ 80% of the Workers

You'll hear a lot of talk about the role of small businesses in the U.S. economy.  It is true that 50% of people work at "small" businesses.    I put small in quotes there because the definition of small business used by government statistics is under 500 people.  I don't really consider a business with 100 to 499 people to be very 'small'.

The reality is the vast majority of the jobs in the US are at a small % of the businesses.

I got data from  the Statistics about Business Size (including Small Business) from the U.S. Census Bureau  their data only goes up to 2008 but its the most recent available.

As of 2008 only 10.7% of the employer firms employed over 20 people.    Business of 20+ employed 82.2% of the total.    
This does not count the nonemployer firms that do not have employees.  There are approximately 21 million nonemployer firms most of which are sole proprietors.

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