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Economy showing signs of recovery, report shows

Even though economic activity is still below pre-pandemic peak levels, a report from Secretary of State Tre Hargett’s office shows signs of economic recovery.

The Tennessee Quarterly Business and Economic Indicators report for the third quarter of 2020 showed 16,470 new entity filings, representing a strong 42.2 percent increase over the same quarter in 2019. Initial filings have now seen positive year-over-year growth for 35 consecutive quarters.
“The pandemic made a significant impact on our economy, but Tennessee’s entrepreneurial spirit and business-friendly environment has seen some Tennesseans start their own businesses,” said Secretary Hargett.

Growth in new entity filings is generally a good indicator for employment, personal income and revenue growth in Tennessee. However, due to the pandemic, future economic growth will depend on public policy measures and the reactions of businesses and private consumers.

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Shelby County saw the largest number of new entity filings and the highest rate of growth, with Davidson County a close second followed by Hamilton and Knox counties. Together, these four counties accounted for 56 percent of all new entity filings in Tennessee.

After spiking at 15.5 percent in April, Tennessee’s unemployment rate has trended downward, falling to 6.3 percent in September. By comparison, the national unemployment rate reached 14.7 percent in April and fell to 7.9 percent in September.

“Tennesseans’ business ingenuity has really shone through over the past half year or so,” said Dr. Bill Fox, the director of the Boyd Center for Business and Economic Research. “More than 16,000 new entity filings this quarter show that people across the state are embarking on new journeys like making masks, delivering food, providing enhanced cleaning services and more to make the best of the situation we are all in together.”

The Tennessee Quarterly Business and Economic Indicators report provides a snapshot of the state’s economy based on various key indicators, including new business data from the Secretary of State’s Division of Business Services. It’s published through a partnership with the University of Tennessee Knoxville’s Boyd Center for Business and Economic Research and the Secretary of State.

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