Stories

Immigrants founded more than half of billion-dollar U.S. startups

Elon Musk in a black suit, white shirt and no tie with both hands palms up talking
Elon Musk. Photo: Mark Brake/Getty Images

Immigrants helped found more than half of the U.S.'s 87 startup companies valued at more than a billion dollars in 2016, according to a study by the National Foundation for American Policy, with the 11 biggest of those companies employing more than 17,000 people.

Why it matters: The Trump administration recently proposed to cancel an Obama-era visa aimed at helping foreign entrepreneurs start new businesses in the U.S. The president and other advocates for cutting immigration levels argue that immigrants are taking jobs from U.S. workers, but in many instances, immigrants not only contribute to the U.S. economy, but create more jobs for Americans.