ST. LOUIS - If you're an entrepreneur looking to start a new business in the St. Louis metro area, you're in good company.
According to data released by the U.S. Census Bureau last week, startup growth nationwide has fallen for the second consecutive year, but St. Louis is bucking that trend.
The new data shows that in 2014, 8.7 percent of businesses in the St. Louis metro area were less than a year old, up 3 percent from 2009. That growth rate is second only to Elizabethtown, Kentucky, which came in at 9 percent startups, up 4.3 percent from 2009.
The rate at which Americans have been starting new businesses has been falling for more than three decades, according to website 538. The website notes that about a third of U.S. metro areas are seeing startup growth, and Missouri is leading the way.
In addition to St. Louis, three other Missouri metro areas cracked the top 20 list of fastest-growing startup cities. Springfield landed fourth on the list with 9.6 percent of all businesses being less than a year old, a growth rate of 2 percent over 2009. St. Joseph landed fifth on the list with a 7.5% startup rate, and a 1.8% growth rate from 2009. And Kansas City took the 12th spot with a 8.4 percent share of startups at a 1.1 percent growth rate from 2009.