Immigrants helped found more than half of the U.S.’s 87 startup companies valued at more than a billion dollars in 2016, according to a study by the National Foundation for American Policy, with the 11 biggest of those companies employing more than 17,000 people.
Another study from late last year found that 43% of Fortune 500 companies were founded by immigrants or their children.
Why it matters: The Trump administration recently proposed to cancel an Obama-era visa aimed at helping foreign entrepreneurs start new businesses in the U.S. The president and other advocates for cutting immigration levels argue that immigrants are taking jobs from U.S. workers, but in many instances, immigrants not only contribute to the U.S. economy, but create more jobs for Americans.
The big picture: Of the 44 immigrants who helped found billion dollar startup in the U.S, 20 first came to the U.S. as international students.
Why that matters: There was a 17% drop in international students in the U.S. last year, in large part due to the 28% decline in Indian students receiving visas. (The Trump administration has also called for increased scrutiny toward certain H-1B work-based visas, which were often acquired by India-based companies who then send high-skilled tech workers to U.S. companies.)