The Business Formation Statistics (BFS) consist of four business application series and eight business formation series. The BFS is unique because it relies only on administrative data from the IRS, specifically the data on applications for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) via IRS Form SS-4, to determine the number of business applications submitted in a quarter, and how many result in businesses with employees. The BFS also includes projections for business formations in the near future.
The BFS began in 2012 as a research project in the Census Bureau’s Center for Economic Studies and was first released in beta form in February 2018. in July 2019, the BFS had its first publication as an Economic Indicators Division data product. The BFS is the culmination of research efforts by the Census Bureau, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, University of Maryland and the University of Notre Dame.
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