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New business statistics: 2005 to March 2024

How many new businesses are started each year in the US? [Updated monthly]

It’s been a big few years for business applications in the US, with 5.47 million business applications being submitted in 2023, according to the US Census Bureau. And 2024 is off to a big start with 884,981 applications being lodged so far in 2024, slightly up (2.45%) compared to the same period last year.

Quick stats on new businesses

  • New businesses in 2024: So for in 2024, 884,981 business applications have been submitted.(1)
  • New businesses in 2023: A total of 5.47 million business applications were lodged in 2023.(1)
  • New businesses in 2022: In 2022, 5.08 million business applications were submitted.(1)
  • Year-on-year change: For the last full years on record, business applications increased 7.57% between 2022 and 2023.(2)
  • Business Applications for February 2024: There were 436,358 business applications submitted in February 2024.(2)
  • Business Applications for January 2024: There were 448,623 business applications submitted in January 2024.(2)
  • Month-on-month change: Business applications were down, decreasing by 2.73% between January and February 2024.(2)
  • Average number of applications: Each year, an average of 3.3 million business applications are submitted.(2)

Business applications: 2005–2024

Since the start of 2024 business applications are up 2.45% compared to the first 2 months of 2023, with 884,981 businesses starting in that time frame compared to 863,840 in the first 2 months of 2023.

Monthly business applications: 2005 – 2024

Monthly business applications have been strong since the pandemic, peaking in July 2020 with 552,214. Since May 2020, the monthly average number of business applications sits at 437,956 compared to 232,475 per month (avg. from January 2005–April 2020).

Month-over-month change

Month-over-month business applications were down in February 2024, with 436,358 submissions compared to the 448,623 business applications submitted in January 2024 — a decrease of 2.73%.

Which month sees the most applications?

While you may think of summer as a time for vacation, it’s actually the busiest time of year for new business apllications with July seeing the most applications at an average of 282,164. On the otherside of the coin is March, with just 265,044 applications being filed.

Number of business applications: 2005–2023

In 2023 business applications were up with 5.48 million applications being submitted compared to 5.08 million in 2022, well above the annual average of 3.3 million since 2005. With the number of business applications increasing by 4.71% year-over-year, we can expect that 2024 will see roughly 5.73 million applications.

How many of these applications turn into businesses?

In addition to the business applications data, the US Census Bureau also offers formation predictions, basically a forecast of how many business applications will become an employer (wage-paying) business within four quarters.

While business applications are up, the percentage of those who start a new business that will have payroll tax liabilities within 12 months of submitting their business application is on the decline. Since 2005, the US Census Bureau predicted an average of 10.2% of applications would become businesses within four quarters of submitting their applications.

Business formation statistics release dates 2024

There will be 11 releases in 2024, with the next update coming on Thursday, April 11, 2024, with information related to business formation in March 2024.

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