The U.S. Census has started reporting new business formation data on a weekly basis as part of its effort to gauge the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.
The numbers show that until the coronavirus-driven shutdown of the economy, Washington state was running strongly ahead of last year’s rate of new businesses, as measured by applications for employer identification numbers for tax purposes.
Surprisingly, perhaps, even after much of the economy here and elsewhere ground to a temporary halt, business starts did not completely collapse.
But here and across the nation, the upward trend did quickly reverse itself: In Washington state, from 14% ahead of last year’s pace, to about 25% behind.
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