Recession Creates A Spike in Entrepreneurs

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We love to feature a positive news story once in a while, and this is a particularly nice one.

Recent studies have shown that the recession has actually spurred many aspiring entrepreneurs. According to a report released by the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, more people worked as entrepreneurs last year than in 2007. The total entrepreneurial activity in the U.S.in 2008 rose to 10.8 percent, from 9.6 percent the year before.

Of those people who started their own business, only 13 percent did so out of necessity. The vast majority chose to because a good opportunity presented itself. This may come as a surprise, given all the talk of Americans who lose their jobs and start a business because they have nothing left to lose.

Yet, a similar survey by Microsoft confirms this conclusion. Out of 300 entrepreneurs questioned, roughly 70 percent actually left their jobs to start a business in the recession... and not just any jobs. Nearly a third of the respondents were full-time employees before starting their new businesses, and very few were working entry level jobs. Furthermore, of the people surveyed, half claimed the recession had actually caused them to start their business.

So what professions are all these titans of industry shifting to? The top sectors for recent start-ups are sales and retail. Funny, if I had the choice to leave my job, I might try something a little more glamorous than retail. In any case, it’s always nice to see that good things do come out of the recession, besides the chocolate chip cookie, of course.

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