Jul 22, 2019

Study: Immigrants and their kids founded 45% of U.S. Fortune 500 companies

Data: New American Economy Research Fund; Chart: Chris Canipe/Axios

Immigrants and their children have founded 45% of the U.S.' Fortune 500 companies, according to a new study by New American Economy, a bipartisan pro-immigration group.

Why it matters: The share of the most successful and globally recognized U.S. companies that have immigrant founders is growing, according to NAE's Hanna Siegel and Andrew Lim, while the Trump administration has tried to make it more difficult for immigrants to come to the U.S., often claiming that they take American jobs and lower wages.

Between the lines: Immigrants may have a negative impact on the work prospects of some U.S.-born workers, as Harvard economics and social policy professor George Borjas wrote for Politico. But they also are increasingly a vital part of the U.S. economy.

By the numbers: Fortune 500 companies founded by immigrants or their children employ 13.5 million people, and on average employ 11% more people than the average Fortune 500 company with a nonimmigrant founder, the study found.

  • These companies brought in $6.1 trillion in annual revenue last year.
  • More than half of the revenue brought in by Fortune 500 companies in New York, Washington state, Georgia and Pennsylvania, among others, came from companies founded by immigrants or their children.
  • In Illinois, the revenue brought in by immigrant-founded Fortune 500 companies was equal to 70% of the state’s GDP.

Go deeper

Immigrant-owned businesses contribute billions to U.S. economy

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Immigrants in the U.S. are twice as likely to start businesses as their native counterparts for a myriad of reasons, generating at least $1 trillion in annual sales revenue, per the New American Economy (NAE).

Driving the news: President Trump recently issued an immigration rule that targets legal immigrants "who are likely to use public benefit programs" — positioning them as a burden on taxpayers. However, studies show that immigrant-owned small businesses in the U.S. generate billions of dollars in tax revenue each year.

Go deeperArrowAug 17, 2019

Trump administration to penalize immigrants likely to use public benefits

A woman and her daugher fill out an application for food stamps. Photo: Rick Loomis/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

A rule that would penalize immigrants who use or are likely to use public benefit programs such as food stamps, housing assistance or Medicaid will be published in the Federal Register on Wednesday.

Why it matters: The long-anticipated rule will make it much harder for immigrants with low incomes or low levels of education to obtain visas or green cards. It will also be much harder for immigrants already in the U.S. to stay longer, change their immigration status or become citizens if they have used any of the specified safety net programs.

Go deeperArrowAug 12, 2019

The coming mass extinction of Fortune 500 companies

The American Motors AMX, 1966. Photo: Pat Brollier, Darryl Norenberg/Enthusiast Network/Getty

Just 60 of the Fortune 500 of 1955 remain in the hallowed group. The rest (like American Motors, above, subsumed by Chrysler in 1987) have been largely the victims of changing times, tough competition or their own missteps.

What's happening: Tom Siebel, founder of C3.ai, an artificial intelligence firm that serves big corporations and the Army, says that this is an existential moment for current Fortune 500 companies that don't move quickly to adapt to the new age of AI and robotics.

Go deeperArrowJul 22, 2019