Editor’s note: The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation is a sponsor of Startland News, but this report was produced independently of the Kansas City-based nonprofit.
U.S. policymakers must shift their focus from the old ways of doing business to efforts that boost entrepreneurship at the grassroots levels and target traditionally underoptimized communities, according to the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.
An August jobs report from the U.S. Department of Labor showed just 130,000 new jobs nationwide, including 25,000 temporary jobs tied to the 2020 census. The unemployment rate was unchanged at 3.7 percent. (Job gains for June were 178,000, with 159,000 added in July, according to the agency.)
“Given the underwhelming August jobs numbers and increasing talk of a recession, U.S. policymakers need to shift their focus to the most important tool for creating new jobs: entrepreneurship,” the Kauffman Foundation, which tracks entrepreneurship nationwide, said Friday in response to the report. “New businesses created by entrepreneurs are the primary source of almost all net new jobs. Unfortunately, the number of new business start-ups nationwide has been essentially flat for 20 years even as the economy has grown.”
Kauffman has been sounding the alarm bell for years about stagnant startup growth, as well as emphasizing entrepreneurs’ perceptions that government is not providing the critical resources and support for them to succeed nor removing harmful obstacles to building early stage businesses.
‘Rather than focusing on old economic tools — further tax cuts, incentives, and further reductions in interest rates — we need a concerted effort from policymakers to support entrepreneurship, especially among women, people of color and rural residents,” Kauffman said in its statement Friday.