Minority-Owned Businesses Remained Resilient During Recession

Release Date: 
Wednesday, September 14, 2016 - 10:30am
Release Number: 
16-09 ADV
Elle Patout

Minority-Owned Businesses Remained Resilient During Recession

WASHINGTON, D.C. –Today’s issue brief, Minority Business Ownership: Data from the 2012 Survey of Business Owners by Regulatory Economist Michael McManus, analyzes the data collected from minority business owners through the Census 2012 Survey of Business Owners. After taking a closer look at the five years enveloping the economic recession, McManus discovered that minority-owned businesses helped keep the US economy alive despite traditional setbacks.

During the recession, minority-owned businesses were able to:

  • Increase their share of overall business ownership from 22% to almost 30%,
  • Bring in $335 billion in sales and an additional 1.3 million employees, and
  • Add 2.2 million businesses, outpacing their population growth.

“While nonminority-owned businesses employed 1.9 million fewer employees in 2012 than in 2007, minority-owned businesses employed 1.3 million more,” said Chief Counsel for Advocacy Darryl L. DePriest.  “Today’s issue brief underscores the importance of the minority entrepreneur and highlights areas for potential growth for minority-owned businesses.”

Despite the positive progress, researchers continue to find minority-owned businesses’ sales and employment lag behind nonminority businesses on average.  The issue brief evaluates some potential reasons for this, such as minority-owned businesses being in lower sales and employment industries. However, more research is necessary to fully explain the causes for these disparities. 

To see more about the characteristics of minority business owners, view the report here on the Office of Advocacy website. 


The Office of Advocacy of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is an independent voice for small business within the federal government. The presidentially appointed and Senate confirmed Chief Counsel for Advocacy advances the views, concerns and interests of small business before Congress, the White House, federal agencies, federal courts and policymakers. Regional advocates and an office in Washington, D.C., support the Chief Counsel’s efforts. For more information, visit www.sba.gov/advocacy, call (202) 205-6533 or get updates on Twitter (@AdvocacySBA) or Facebook at www.facebook.com/AdvocacySBA.