Take that RTW: Missouri leads the nation in business creation


Missouri more than 10 points higher than second-place Kentucky




Missouri led the nation in business creation in 2013 – despite NOT being a right-to-work state.

Contrary to right-to-work proponents claims that the anti-worker, wage stifling law is needed to grow states’ economies, newly released census data shows that Missouri not only led the nation in business creation in 2013 — the other states weren’t even close.

While most states across the country dropped, Missouri jumped 16.7 percent in business creation in 2013. Kentucky finished second with a 6 percent increase.

The data, released by the U.S. Census Bureau and analyzed by the Kauffman Foundation, shows that there were 1,293 more businesses created in Missouri in 2013 (the most recent year for which data is available) than in 2012.

Missouri had 7,759 new businesses in 2012, and that number swelled to 9,052 in 2013.

Only 11 states reported increases in the same period. Only three right-to-work states – Nevada, Arizona and Mississippi – saw any kind of new business growth. Mississippi and Arizona grew less than half a percentage point, while Nevada, at 4.25 percent, lagged far behind Missouri.

“Right-to-work doesn’t spur new business development,” said Mike Louis, president of the Missouri AFL-CIO said. “Business is created through innovation and workers earning a decent wage, which they can then invest in the economy.”

He added: “Because of Missouri organized labor there is a well trained workforce in Missouri that is ready willing and able.”

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Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon hailed the findings.

“Small businesses are the engines of our economy, and that’s why we’ve worked hard to help entrepreneurs turn cutting-edge ideas into high-paying jobs for Missourians,” Nixon said in a statement. “This report — showing that Missouri is not only bucking the national trend, but leading the country in new business creation — is proof positive that our efforts are paying off in a big way.”


Over the same time period, 39 states saw a decrease in new business creation. Of the states that did see an increase in the number of new businesses, Missouri outperformed them dramatically – experiencing a bigger growth in new business creation than all 10 of those states combined.


The news comes as Missouri ranked in the top 10 – for the first time – for startup funding in 2015, according to Forbes. This, despite Republican legislators claims that a right-to-work law is needed to grow the state’s economy.

Right-to-work doesn’t grow the economy, it depresses wages, meaning consumers have less buying power and are less likely to support new businesses.

The Fiscal Year 2016 budget signed by Gov. Nixon includes nearly $16 million for programs at the Missouri Technology Corporation, a public-private partnership promoting entrepreneurship.

The partnership was created in 1994 to promote entrepreneurship and foster the growth of high-tech companies, but was significantly underfunded until Gov. Nixon took office.

Under Gov. Nixon’s leadership, MTC has provided more than $24 million to 70 start-ups, helping those companies leverage $200 million in private capital to commercialize their products and services, create jobs and grow.

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