Could immigration changes impact Tennessee's economy?

Feb 5, 2018

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (OSBORNE)  --  Debate on the immigration issue continues this week in Washington. WMOT reporting partner is weighing in with an analysis of what kind of economic impact immigrants have in each state.


The personal finance website used 19 metrics to score the states, including foreign-born household income to jobs generated by immigrant-owned businesses. Jill Gonzalez is a Wallethub analyst.

“Tennessee ranked toward the bottom of the list here, so that means immigrants have a smaller impact in Tennessee than most other states. It ranked 44th out of all 50 states, plus DC.”

Gonzalez says about ten percent of all businesses in Tennessee are owned by foreign-born individuals. That’s close to the national average. But only about half of the state’s foreign-born residents own their own home. That’s well below average.

When you consider the economic impact immigrants are having among Tennessee’s regional neighbors here in the Southeast, the state again has a middling score.

“Tennessee is really only beat out here by South Carolina at number 45, Louisiana 46. As far as the South, Arkansas and Alabama are in the bottom ten as well.”

The state’s with the largest economic impact from the foreign-born is right where you would expect it…right along both coasts. New York, New Jersey, Maryland, California and Washington State are all in the top ten.

Would you like to review the complete Wallethub study?