Michael Bryan

Written by Michael Bryan

Modified & Updated: 30 Dec 2023

Sherman Smith

Reviewed by Sherman Smith

us economy facts

Throughout the history of the United States, its economy experienced many highs and lows. Money makes the world go round, and the US has “Been there, done that.” Today, the United States leads the global economy as the largest economy in the world. Discover how the US maintained its spot as the world’s largest economy with these US economy facts.

  1. The US has the world’s largest economy.
  2. GDP or Gross Domestic Product is a monetary measure of the market value of goods, trades, and services produced by a country.
  3. The United States has a GDP of over $20 trillion.
  4. After the United States, China is the world’s second-largest economy with a GDP of more than $14 trillion.
  5. To better understand how massive is the economy of the United States, let’s compare it to India, one of the most fastest-growing economies of the world. India’s GDP is $3.2 trillion.
  1. The stock exchange is the facility where stockbrokers and traders/shareholders can buy and sell shares of a listed company and other financial instruments.
  2. The New York Stock Exchange is the world’s largest stock exchange (NYSE).
  3. The NASDAQ Stock Exchange in the U.S. is the second-largest Stock Exchange in the world.
  4. The U.S. Stock Market has a daily trading value of $285 billion.
  5. The market capitalization of the companies listed in the NYSE totals over $30 trillion.
  6. The United States Dollar is the most reserved currency in the world.
  7. The U.S. Dollar represents 61% of international foreign currency.
  8. After the U.S. Dollar, the second most reserved currency is Euro at 20%, followed by the Japanese Yen at 5%, and the Great British Pound at 4%.
  9. There are around 180 currencies in the world and two currencies alone (USD and EURO) grabs 25% of the daily foreign exchange trading volume.
  10. The U.S. dollar dominated the world from the end of the 19th century.
  1. The New York Stock Exchange’s nickname is “The Big Board.”
  2. By the end of the 20th century, the United States dollar was considered the world’s dominant reserve currency.
  3. As of the end of 2019, the United State’s debt to China is $1.07 trillion. Furthermore, the country has a gross external debt of $20 trillion.
  4. The U.S. accumulated more debt than it did under the past 42 U.S. presidents combined during President Barack Obama’s first term.
  5. Out of more than 337 million population of America, nearly 58 million Americans are collecting Social Security benefits.
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US Economy Facts Infographics

US Economy Facts Infographics

The U.S. Dollar is so strong that it can even postpone a currency crisis.

Due to the country’s currency strength, the United States can easily run higher trade deficits with greatly postponed economic impact. In fact, the US economy is so strong that it has the luxury to postpone a currency crisis.

There are 7 major Currency Pairs associated with the U.S. Dollar.

While it may sound “unfair,” all of the so-called Major Pairs are linked with the U.S. Dollar. All kinds of currency unconnected to the U.S. dollar are called ‘Minor Pairs’, ‘Cross Pairs’, and ‘Exotic Pairs’. How’s that for US economy facts?

The 7 Major Pairs play a vital role in the US economy.

If your favorite artists have collabs and features, the 7 Major Pairs are the leading connections between different currencies throughout the globe. The 7 Major Pairs are as follows:

  • USD/JPY – (USD and Japanese Yen)
  • GBP/USD – (USD and British Pound)
  • AUD/USD – (USD and Australian Dollar)
  • USD/CAD – (USD and Canadian Dollar)
  • NZD/USD – (USD and New Zealand Dollar)
  • USD/CHF – (USD and Swiss Franc)
  • EUR/USD – (USD and Euro)

The "economy" of Warren Buffet is bigger than most country's economies.

Warren Buffet runs Berkshire Hataway, a business with a market capitalization of over $415 billion. For reference, a growing country like the Philippines only has a GDP of $375 billion.

warren buffet, us economy facts
Photo by Mark Hirschey on Wikimedia Commons

By reaching a trillion-dollar market cap, Apple created a new world record.

Apple is the world’s first corporation to reach a market capitalization of over $1 trillion. On Jan 6, 2020, Apple reached the $1.3 trillion market cap.

PetroChina claims to be the world’s first trillion-dollar company. However, the valuation is not unreliable because only 2% of the company is publicly traded.

Apple's giant market capitalization is equivalent to hundreds of big companies.

The Taiwan and Singapore Stock Exchanges are among the biggest stocks exchange in Asia. Apple’s market capitalization is the same amount as the total market capitalization of all the listed companies in the Taiwan and Singapore Stock Exchange.

If California were a sovereign nation, its economy would surpass India's.

California’s economy is the biggest in the United States, recording a $3.137 trillion gross state product as of 2019. California’s GSP is so big that if ‘The Golden State’ were a sovereign nation, it would dethrone India as the fifth-largest economy in the world. Definitely one of the coolest US economy facts.

The people and companies in California are its best assets.

California is the home to some of the world’s most valuable companies such as  Apple, Facebook, Walt Disney, Chevron, Wells Fargo, hp, and Intel, just to name a few. This state is also the most populous in the United States with almost 40 million people.

The economy of California relies on agriculture.

The Central Valley of California is one of the most fertile agricultural regions on the planet. It plants over half of the United States’ fruits, vegetables, and nuts.

The GDP of the United States per capita is on an uptrend.

One of the US economy facts that shows you how big it is: The US GDP per capita has steadily increased over the years. The Latin term per capita translates to “for each head,” meaning that it represents the total GDP distributed per each person in its population.

  • 2016 – $58,000
  • 2017 – $60,000
  • 2018 – $63,000
  • 2019 – $65,000

The US economy has been the top economy since the 19th century.

The US economy is arguably the most consistent one in the world. Since the late 19th century, it has been the world’s leading economy. To this day, it remains the world’s largest economy.

The United States is not the richest country in the world.

Despite having the world’s biggest economy, the United States is not the richest country in the world per capita. The U.S. only ranks at the 10th place, leaving Qatar as the richest country on the planet with $130,475 GDP per capita compared to the U.S. with only $65,000.

Like most countries in the world, wealth is not equally distributed in the U.S.

One of the main reasons why the United States is not the richest country in the world per capita is huge income gaps. There are massive disparities in minimum wages and those who are very wealthy.

The Federal Reserve is the "biggest financial influence" not just in the US, but in the world.

The monetary policy is the monetary authority of a country that controls either the interest rate. It is managed by the Federal Reserve which is guided by the current Federal Reserve Chairman, Jerome Powell.

The Federal Reserve’s instruments include the money supply, fed funds rate and the use of credit. These instruments control how interest rates affect the United States’ economy as well as other country’s economies.

The Federal Reserve adjusts the interests depending on the needs of the economy.

Interest rates are the key indicators of an economy’s growth. When the Federal Reserve offers low-interest rates, it is expected to drive growth and positivity on the part of borrowers, while stimulating the economy as well. So why not make the interest low all the time?

In contrast, a high-interest rate will help the economy avoid overproduction dead ends as well as asset bubbles since it “discourages” everyone to borrow.

The US Treasury bond provides beefs-up the economy.

A US Treasury bond is a special kind of bond issued by the government of the United States and they will use the proceeds for its initiatives accordingly.

When a fund manager or even individuals purchase a Treasury bond, they are loaning money to the US government. Although historically it yields less compare to the stocks, it is a solid way to preserve the capital because you know that the government will pay its debts regardless of the economy’s status.

The Great Depression started in 1929.

During the 1930s, the Great Depression struck the United States and the whole world. It was the worst economic downfall in the history of the industrialized age which lastest for ten long agonizing years.

The four reasons for the Great Depression are the stock market crash of 1929, banking panics, the gold standard (a monetary system that prioritizes gold), and steep tariffs.

If there is a "good side" in the Great Depression, lessons are learned.

Lessons are learned from the Great Depression such as diversifying the financial sector and regulated the banks even more.

Furthermore, here are the results of the Great Depression:

  • The industrial production went down by 47%
  • Gross Domestic Product of the United States fell by 30%
  • Unemployment is over 20%
  • Some banks went bankrupt.

There are no trillionaires just yet.

As of the year 2020, there are no trillionaires just yet. Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, has a net worth of $107.3 billion. Jeff is currently the world’s richest man.

Jeff Bezos could be the first trillionaire.

Humanity could finally the first trillionaire by 2026. According to estimates, Jeff Bezos’s net worth has grown at a speed of 34 % over the last five years, which could make him the world’s first trillionaire.

jeff bezos, us economy facts
Photo by Seattle City Council on Wikimedia Commons

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