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New Study: 45% Of Fortune 500 Companies Started By Immigrants Or Their Children

(AP Photo/Jenny Kane

A new study from New American Economy found that nearly "45 percent of Fortune 500 companies were founded by immigrants or their children."

The report, published in late July, notes that 223 of America's largest companies were started by first-generation or second-generation Americans. "Of those companies, 101 were founded directly by foreign-born individuals while another 122 were founded by the children of immigrants," the study indicates.


These companies brought in $16.1 trillion in revenue in the fiscal year 2018. As the report says, "that figure is greater than the GDP of many developed countries—including Japan, Germany, and the United Kingdom." Likewise, these companies employ more than 13.5 million people with each company on average having around 61,000 employees. These are businesses like Wayfair, Levi Strauss, and Hess. 

The findings also note that immigrants play a crucial role for small and midsize companies as well. 

via New Economy:

Medium and small businesses are also vital to the U.S. economy, employing many more millions at neighborhood stores, restaurants, professional services, and other local businesses. Immigrants have a significant role to play here, with nearly 3.2 million immigrants running their own businesses. Data from 2017 also shows that immigrants continue to be more likely to be entrepreneurs than their U.S.-born counterparts.

There are ten states home to ten or more Fortune 500 companies started by immigrants and their children. New York has the most with 35 of these kinds of corporations. These states have massive economic benefits thanks to the business. In Illinois, for example, "70.3 percent of the state’s GDP" was from the combined revenue of the 21 "new American" companies. 

However, it should be noted that illegal immigrants, on the other hand, cost the United States taxpayers roughly $150 billion. Recently, Director of National Immigration Forum Ali Noorani told Fox News that "We need an immigration system that treats the American taxpayer fairly." 


Noorani added, "Right now, our immigration system doesn't treat the American taxpayer fairly and I would argue it really treats nobody fairly. At the federal level, what the Congress and the president need to do is work together to create an immigration system that is fair to the taxpayer and 10 or 11 million people who are undocumented."

On Monday, President Donald J. Trump suggested that immigration reform could be tied to new gun-control measures. The president has largely supported legal immigration reform while advocating the prevention of illegal border crossings. 

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