The COVID small business boom (Indicator favorite) : Planet Money : The Indicator from Planet Money It's Encore Week at The Indicator! We're sharing some of our favorite episodes of 2021.

Today, we hear about people who became small business owners after losing their jobs due to the pandemic. AKA the hotdog guy episode!

This episode originally came out in July.

The COVID small business boom (Indicator favorite)

The COVID small business boom (Indicator favorite)

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Laura Chase de Formigny Photography
Chris's hot dog stand
Laura Chase de Formigny Photography

It's Encore Week at The Indicator! We're sharing some of our favorite episodes of 2021. Today, we hear about people who became small business owners after losing their jobs due to the pandemic. AKA the hotdog guy episode! This episode originally came out in July.


People started over 440 thousand businesses in June 2021. The sixteen-month period from March 2020 to June 2021 marked a record high for business startups. Which factors are responsible for this wave of entrepreneurs?

Economist Julia Pollak says economic recessions can create ideal conditions for people to start their own businesses - and the economic downturn caused by the pandemic is no different. Many people suddenly had time and, in the case of COVID, the financial resources in the form of stimulus checks, to consider entrepreneurship. In addition, startup costs have gone down over the years and online platforms have made small ventures viable. Julia thinks many of the new entrepreneurs are resilient and can grow from the pandemic economic downturn.

Chris Van Jura is a business owner in the Washington D.C. area. After being laid off from his restaurant work, Chris had an idea. He bought and converted a used food cart into his new hot dog business, Catalyst Hot Dogs. The good news is that the business is picking up steam.

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