Corporations Make Up 5 Percent of Businesses but Earn 62 Percent of Revenues

November 25, 2014

While there are significantly more pass-through entities than C corporations, corporations still earn the largest portion of total gross receipts. In 2011, corporations earned 62 percent of the $30.9 trillion in total business receipts. Meanwhile, pass-through businesses make up nearly 95 percent of all firms and account for the remaining 38 percent of gross receipts with $11.8 trillion.

It’s interesting to note, though, that despite earning $8 trillion less in total gross receipts, pass-throughs earned more net income (over $1.3 trillion) than corporations (over $800 billion) in 2011.

For more charts like this, please see our new chart book, Business in America: Illustrated.

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A pass-through business is a sole proprietorship, partnership, or S corporation that is not subject to the corporate income tax; instead, this business reports its income on the individual income tax returns of the owners and is taxed at individual income tax rates.