How Have New Jersey’s New Americans Helped Our Economy?


Latino and Asian entrepreneurs and consumers add billions of dollars and tens of thousands of jobs to New Jersey’s economy.

  • The 2010 purchasing power of New Jersey’s Latinos totaled $39.3 billion-an increase of 339.8% since 1990. Asian buying power totaled $33.8 billion-an increase of 504.1% since 1990, according to the Selig Center for Economic Growth at the University of Georgia.
  • New Jersey’s 67,755 Asian-owned businesses had sales and receipts of $29.9 billion and employed 115,024 people in 2007, the last year for which data is available. The state’s 68,374 Latino-owned businesses had sales and receipts of $10.2 billion and employed 48,059 people in 2007, according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s Survey of Business Owners.

Immigrants are integral to New Jersey’s economy as workers.

  • Immigrants comprised 27% of the state’s workforce in 2010 (or 1,234,045 workers), according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
  • Immigrant workers contributed at least $47 billion to New Jersey’s gross state product in 2006, according to a study at the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers University.
  • More than 40% of the state’s scientists and engineers with advanced degrees were foreign-born in 2006, according to the same study.
  • Immigration to New Jersey raised the wages of native-born workers without a high-school diploma by 3.0%between 1990 and 2000, according to the same study.
  • Unauthorized immigrants comprised 8.6% of the state’s workforce (or 400,000 workers) in 2010, according to a report by the Pew Hispanic Center.
  • If all unauthorized immigrants were removed from New Jersey, the state would lose $24.2 billion in economic activity, $10.7 billion in gross state product, and approximately 103,898 jobs, even accounting for adequate market adjustment time, according to a report by the Perryman Group.

Unauthorized immigrants pay taxes.

Unauthorized immigrants in New Jersey paid $446.1 million in state and local taxes in 2010, according to data from the Institute for Taxation and Economic Policy, which includes:

  • $40 million in state income taxes.
  • $81.3 million in property taxes
  • $324.9 million in sales taxes.
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