BLS Data Highlights Key Role of Big Businesses in Job Creation

May 4, 2018

WASHINGTON—Following the release of new data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics showing that large firms have been responsible for nearly half of net job growth in the United States since 2007, the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF) today released the following statement from its president, Robert D. Atkinson, co-author of the new book, Big Is Beautiful: Debunking the Myth of Small Business:

Despite the widely accepted assumption that small businesses are the leading source of job creation, the reality is that large companies are the real engines of the American economy. Small businesses may create many jobs, but they also destroy many jobs when they fail or downsize. Yet public policy continues to be stacked in their favor—from the tax code to the many benefits and exemptions small firms receive. It’s past time to adopt a size-neutral approach to public policy that recognizes the essential role big businesses play in not only creating jobs, but creating higher wage jobs with better benefits.

BLS data show that in the third quarter of 2017, firms with 250 or more employees had a net employment increase, while firms with fewer than 250 employees had a net employment decrease. Since 2007, 22 percent of job growth among private sector firms was contributed by small firms, 30 percent by mid-sized firms, and 48 percent by large firms.