Saturday, February 5, 2011

Economy of the United States


 USA Economy Overview
The US has the largest and most technologically powerful economy in the world, with a per capita GDP of $47,400. In this market-oriented economy, private individuals and business firms make most of the decisions, and the federal and state governments buy needed goods and services predominantly in the private marketplace. US business firms enjoy greater flexibility than their counterparts in Western Europe and Japan in decisions to expand capital plant, to lay off surplus workers, and to develop new products. At the same time, they face higher barriers to enter their rivals' home markets than foreign firms face entering US markets. US firms are at or near the forefront in technological advances, especially in computers and in medical, aerospace, and military equipment; their advantage has narrowed since the end of World War II. The onrush of technology largely explains the gradual development of a "two-tier labor market" in which those at the bottom lack the education and the professional/technical skills of those at the top and, more and more, fail to get comparable pay raises, health insurance coverage, and other benefits. Since 1975, practically all the gains in household income have gone to the top 20% of households. The war in March-April 2003 between a US-led coalition and Iraq, and the subsequent occupation of Iraq, required major shifts in national resources to the military. Soaring oil prices between 2005 and the first half of 2008 threatened inflation and unemployment, as higher gasoline prices ate into consumers' budgets. Imported oil accounts for about 60% of US consumption. Long-term problems include inadequate investment in economic infrastructure, rapidly rising medical and pension costs of an aging population, sizable trade and budget deficits, and stagnation of family income in the lower economic groups. The merchandise trade deficit reached a record $840 billion in 2008 before shrinking to $506 billion in 2009, and ramping back up to $630 billion in 2010. The global economic downturn, the sub-prime mortgage crisis, investment bank failures, falling home prices, and tight credit pushed the United States into a recession by mid-2008. GDP contracted until the third quarter of 2009, making this the deepest and longest downturn since the Great Depression. To help stabilize financial markets, the US Congress established a $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) in October 2008. The government used some of these funds to purchase equity in US banks and other industrial corporations, much of which had been returned to the government by early 2011. In January 2009 the US Congress passed and President Barack OBAMA signed a bill providing an additional $787 billion fiscal stimulus to be used over 10 years - two-thirds on additional spending and one-third on tax cuts - to create jobs and to help the economy recover. Approximately two-thirds of these funds were injected into the economy by the end of 2010. In March 2010, President OBAMA signed a health insurance reform bill into law that will extend coverage to an additional 32 million American citizens by 2016, through private health insurance for the general population and Medicaid for the impoverished. In July 2010, the president signed the DODD-FRANK Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, a bill designed to promote financial stability by protecting consumers from financial abuses, ending taxpayer bailouts of financial firms, dealing with troubled banks that are "too big to fail," and improving accountability and transparency in the financial system - in particular, by requiring certain financial derivatives to be traded in markets that are subject to government regulation and oversight. In late 2010, the US Federal Reserve Bank (The Fed) announced that it would purchase $600 billion worth of US Government bonds by June 2011, in an attempt to keep interest rates from rising and snuffing out the nascent recovery.

GDP (purchasing power parity):

$14.72 trillion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 2
$14.33 trillion (2009 est.)
$14.72 trillion (2008 est.)
note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP (official exchange rate):
$14.62 trillion (2010 est.)

GDP - real growth rate:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
2.8% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 133
-2.6% (2009 est.)
0% (2008 est.)

GDP - per capita (PPP):
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$47,400 (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 10
$46,700 (2009 est.)
$48,300 (2008 est.)
note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP - composition by sector:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
agriculture: 1.2%
industry: 22.2%
services: 76.7% (2010 est.)

Labor force:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
153.9 million
country comparison to the world: 4
note: includes unemployed (2010 est.)

Labor force - by occupation:
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farming, forestry, and fishing: 0.7%
manufacturing, extraction, transportation, and crafts: 20.3%
managerial, professional, and technical: 37.2%
sales and office: 24%
other services: 17.7%
note: figures exclude the unemployed (2009)

Unemployment rate:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
9.6% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 107
9.3% (2009 est.)

Population below poverty line:
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12% (2004 est.)

Household income or consumption by percentage share:
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lowest 10%: 2%
highest 10%: 30% (2007 est.)

Distribution of family income - Gini index:
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45 (2007)
country comparison to the world: 42
40.8 (1997)

Investment (gross fixed):
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12.8% of GDP (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 142

Public debt:
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58.9% of GDP (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 36
53.5% of GDP (2009 est.)
note: data cover only what the United States Treasury denotes as "Debt Held by the Public," which includes all debt instruments issued by the Treasury that are owned by non-US Government entities; the data include Treasury debt held by foreign entities; the data exclude debt issued by individual US states, as well as intra-governmental debt; intra-governmental debt consists of Treasury borrowings from surpluses in the trusts for Federal Social Security, Federal Employees, Hospital Insurance (Medicare and Medicaid), Disability and Unemployment, and several other smaller trusts; if data for intra-government debt were added, "Gross Debt" would increase by about 30% of GDP

Inflation rate (consumer prices):
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
1.4% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 34
-0.3% (2009 est.)

Central bank discount rate:
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0.5% (31 December 2009)
country comparison to the world: 137
0.86% (31 December 2008)

Commercial bank prime lending rate:
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3.25% (31 December 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 149
5.09% (31 December 2008 est.)

Stock of narrow money:
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$1.74 trillion (31 December 2010 est)
country comparison to the world: 5
$1.722 trillion (31 December 2009 est)

Stock of broad money:
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$12.39 trillion (31 December 2009)
country comparison to the world: 3
$12.46 trillion (31 December 2008)

Stock of domestic credit:
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$32.61 trillion (31 December 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 1
$31.53 trillion (31 December 2008 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares:
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$15.08 trillion (31 December 2009)
country comparison to the world: 1
$11.74 trillion (31 December 2008)
$19.95 trillion (31 December 2007)

Agriculture - products:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
wheat, corn, other grains, fruits, vegetables, cotton; beef, pork, poultry, dairy products; fish; forest products

Industries:
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highly diversified, world leading, high-technology innovator, second largest industrial output in world; petroleum, steel, motor vehicles, aerospace, telecommunications, chemicals, electronics, food processing, consumer goods, lumber, mining

Industrial production growth rate:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
3.3% (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 96

Electricity - production:
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4.11 trillion kWh (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 1

Electricity - consumption:
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3.873 trillion kWh (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 1

Electricity - exports:
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24.08 billion kWh (2008 est.)

Electricity - imports:
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57.02 billion kWh (2008 est.)

Oil - production:
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9.056 million bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 3

Oil - consumption:
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18.69 million bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 1

Oil - exports:
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1.704 million bbl/day (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 13

Oil - imports:
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11.31 million bbl/day (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 1


Oil - proved reserves:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
19.12 billion bbl (1 January 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 14

Natural gas - production:
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593.4 billion cu m (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 1

Natural gas - consumption:
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646.6 billion cu m (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 1

Natural gas - exports:
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30.35 billion cu m (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 9

Natural gas - imports:
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106.1 billion cu m (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 1

Natural gas - proved reserves:
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6.928 trillion cu m (1 January 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 6

Current account balance:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
-$561 billion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 190
-$378.4 billion (2009 est.)

Exports:
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$1.27 trillion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 4
$1.069 trillion (2009 est.)

Exports - commodities:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
agricultural products (soybeans, fruit, corn) 9.2%, industrial supplies (organic chemicals) 26.8%, capital goods (transistors, aircraft, motor vehicle parts, computers, telecommunications equipment) 49.0%, consumer goods (automobiles, medicines) 15.0%

Exports - partners:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
Canada 19.37%, Mexico 12.21%, China 6.58%, Japan 4.84%, UK 4.33%, Germany 4.1% (2009)

Imports:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
$1.903 trillion (2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 1
$1.575 trillion (2009 est.)

Imports - commodities:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
agricultural products 4.9%, industrial supplies 32.9% (crude oil 8.2%), capital goods 30.4% (computers, telecommunications equipment, motor vehicle parts, office machines, electric power machinery), consumer goods 31.8% (automobiles, clothing, medicines, furniture, toys)

Imports - partners:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
China 19.3%, Canada 14.24%, Mexico 11.12%, Japan 6.14%, Germany 4.53% (2009)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
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$NA (31 December 2010 est.)
$130.8 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Debt - external:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
$13.98 trillion (30 June 2010)
country comparison to the world: 1
$13.75 trillion (31 December 2008)
note: approximately 4/5ths of US external debt is denominated in US dollars; foreign lenders have been willing to hold US dollar denominated debt instruments because they view the dollar as the world's reserve currency
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
$2.581 trillion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 1
$2.41 trillion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
$3.597 trillion (31 December 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 1
$3.367 trillion (31 December 2009 est.)

Exchange rates:
Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order.
British pounds per US dollar: 1 (2010), 0.6504 (2010), 0.6494 (2009), 0.5302 (2008), 0.4993 (2007), 0.5418 (2006)
Canadian dollars per US dollar: 1.0346 (2010), 1.1548 (2009), 1.0364 (2008), 1.0724 (2007), 1.1334 (2006)
Chinese yuan per US dollar: 6.7852 (2010), 6.8249 (2009), 6.9385 (2008), 7.61 (2007), 7.97 (2006)
euros per US dollar: 0.7715 (2010), 0.7338 (2009), 0.6827 (2008), 0.7345 (2007), 0.7964 (2006)
Japanese yen per US dollar: 88.67 (2010), 94.5 (2009), 103.58 (2008), 117.99 (2007), 116.18 (2006)

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