Home

The personal blog of Jonathan H. Todd. All opinions are my own.

Currently an economics writer for NerdWallet, Jonathan received his AB in Law, Letters, and Society from the University of Chicago (’06), and MBA from Vanderbilt University (’12). Other professional experiences include several years managing portfolios of securitized debt products at Bank of America and consulting early stage technology and digital strategy companies.

A native of Los Angeles, CA, Jonathan now lives in Boston, MA.

4 Comments

  1. Ashley DeSena

    July 19, 2015 at 9:47 pm

    Dear Mr. Todd,

    I just read an article in the local paper regarding the best towns to do business in North Carolina. I have a few questions that I hope you can answer:
    1. “The number of businesses with paid employees” – Is this criteria as simple as it sounds? If so, could you please explain how the numbers are so low? Don’t most businesses have paid employees?
    2. How does the number of businesses per 100 people and median annual income indicate that there is opportunity to create and grow a local business? Maybe I misunderstand the figure, but it seems that there could be 100 businesses per 100 people and yet none of the hundred businesses are owned by local people (although the odds are nearly impossible, of course). Also, does a higher median annual income correlate with a higher rate of entrepreneurship?
    3. How did you factor in the regulatory climate?

    Thanks so much for your help.

    Sincerely,
    Ashley DeSena

    • Ashley, terribly sorry for the delayed response. To your questions,

      1) It’s a measurement of how many companies in a city have paid employees, vs. sole proprietors. Across most cities, sole proprietors outnumber businesses with paid businesses (there is no revenue minimum, so this counts for babysitters, individual tax preparers, etc.). If there are more businesses with paid employees, that’s indicative of a healthier business environment, and is more economically sustainable.

      2) We haven’t run incomes against entrepreneurship, but a high number just means that a city is a desirable place to start a business. Even if the people who own the businesses don’t live in the town, it may still be a very desirable place to start a business.

      3) We didn’t directly calculate the regulatory environment, but this seems to be somewhat wrapped up in the “Number of businesses per 100 residents” number. If there isn’t much red tape and it’s easy to start a business, people will be more likely to start businesses in that city.

      Hope that helps, but please let me know if you have any other questions.

      Thanks,
      Jon

  2. Hi Jonathan,

    I noticed that you referenced Thumbtack’s annual survey in a recent article and thought you might enjoy taking a look at LawnStarter’s 2015 Quality of Life Index Report.

    We compiled numerous data points to find out how states and cities matched up against each other in terms of the quality of life they present for potential and current residents. A couple of the factors we ranked were GDP, divorce rates, and male-to-female income ratio.

    If you’d like to check it out and see where your city/state ranks, you can find the rankings here: https://www.lawnstarter.com/quality-of-life

    I appreciate your time and please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions or concerns.

    Cheers,

    Ryan Farley
    Chief Economic Research Analyst
    LawnStarter

  3. Jonathan – Couldn’t find Sioux Falls, SD in the Best Cities for Young Entrepreneurs article? Trying to reconcile the data with ours…any help is appreciated…thx. JB

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

*

© 2016 Jonathan H. Todd

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑