Entrepreneurs and Recessions: Do Downturns Matter?

This paper examined the question: to what extent is a company’s founding date—with a particular focus on company cohorts from weak economic periods—related to its eventual financial success?

The relationship between company success and economic conditions at the time of a company's founding is ill-understood. Do weak economic conditions at the start lead to fewer companies founded? Do weak conditions lead to fewer successful companies? Do companies founded in better economic times fare better than those founded during recessions? The answers to these questions are important because of the central role that entrepreneurial ventures play in our economy, from job creation, to innovation, to improvements in our overall standard of living and GDP.

In this study, titled “Entrepreneurs and Recessions: Do Downturns Matter?,” Kauffman Foundation Senior Fellow Paul S. Kedrosky presents findings from collecting and analyzing data to find out how economic conditions impact startup success.