Inflation’s Unexpected Dividend: More Entrepreneurs

Up to four million Latino workers are thinking about taking the entrepreneurship plunge to help cope with record-high inflation. 

That’s according to a new reading of a December survey from QuickBooks, Intuit’s fintech software arm, which was collected as the nation’s inflation gauges were rapidly escalating. The survey suggests that 15 percent of Latino and Hispanic respondents expressed interest in becoming an entrepreneur in 2022. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates the number of Latino and Hispanic workers in the U.S. at 27.1 million.

A more recent QuickBooks survey from May shows that 44 percent of budding Latino entrepreneurs (1,295 respondents) were hungry to add to their income stream by starting a business on top of their current job. The May study surveyed 2,679 in total, of whom 1,679 respondents identified as Latino or Hispanic, although sample sizes varied depending on the survey’s questions.

As inflation eats away at the pocketbooks of consumers and businesses alike, more are getting creative as a means of generating additional income. Within the May survey, more than half out of the sample of 1,295 Latino respondents said the freedom to be their own boss featured highly in their decision to move into entrepreneurship. That was followed up closely by an interest in starting a business.

Of course, the gap between interest and action can be wide. To make the leap, business owners surveyed report that making the most out of technology is key. A majority of respondents expressed their view that the internet and other new technologies, from software to e-commerce, have created a landscape that’s more conducive to launching new ventures.

Respondents specifically credit tech with easing the process of finding new customers, tapping into business-management tools, and accessing business advice. They add that digital technology has lowered startup costs and helped with removing language barriers as well. 

A bonus: Investing in new technology helps maintain business relevance in an evolving consumer world–and it’s something that current business owners encourage newcomers to do sooner than later. Out of a sample of 384 Latino business owners, more than half (57 percent) expressed regret about not using digital technology when they first got their start, according to the May study.

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