Skip to content
Chart of the No. of New Business Applications (2011 to 2021)

How Many New Businesses Start Each Year?

New business statistics indicate that more and more people in the United States have started their own businesses over the past decade.

This is no surprise, given the US’s relatively high rating of 91.6 out of 100 by the World Bank for ease of starting a business.

So then, how many new businesses start each year?

According to the US Business Formation Statistics (BFS), the number of business applications has steadily risen since the previous decade. 

In 2011, the number of new business applications was 2.58 million. Fast forward a decade to 2021, and this figure more than doubled to 5.4 million. It was also a 23.2 percent increase from 2019 and the second-largest increase of the past decade.

Start selling online now with Shopify

Start your free trial

New Business Statistics (Q1 2020 to Q3 2022)

Chart of No. of New Business Applications (Q1 2020 to Q3 2022)

The start of 2020 saw fewer people start new businesses in the US. New business statistics from the first quarter of 2020 show a total of 840,662 applications. This represents a 3.8 percent year-over-year fall and can be attributed to the economic uncertainty triggered by the coronavirus pandemic. 

However, sentiment quickly rebounded: Q2 2020 saw 910,704 new business applications—an 8.33 percent rise from Q1 and a 4.6 percent increase year-over-year.

The following quarter’s quarterly new business applications hit an all-time high. Around 1.48 million new applications were filed—an impressive 62.1 percent quarterly increase and a 70 percent year-over-year jump.

Industry experts say the steep surge in Q3 may be due to the delayed processing of a backlog of applications and the ecommerce boom, which spurred many to start online businesses.

New business statistics show that in 2021, 5.4 million applications were filed, the most in any given calendar year so far. 

Analysts credit a part of the increase to a “need” from people after having lost their jobs during the pandemic; starting their own business is a way to potentially acquire lost income. Some are also doing so to meet rising and changing consumer demands.

New business statistics from 2022 show that over 3.8 million new business applications were filed in the first three quarters. This marks a 7.56 percent annual decrease but is 17.91 percent more than the number of new business applications received in the same period in 2020.

Want to Learn More?