Wednesday, July 25, 2012

US Cities With a Bigger GDP Than Greece

Derek Thompson writing in The Atlantic (emphasis mine):
If you want to understand why Europe looks like Europe, it can help to look at the United States.

This analysis from the
Wall Street Journal brings color to the comparison by matching the size of U.S. metro economies to the size of European countries. I did not realize until today that the greater New York City economy was essentially the size of Spain; nor that Los Angeles was bigger than Switzerland; nor that Boston-Cambridge was larger than Greece.

The euro zone as a whole is about $17 trillion, according to the IMF, which makes it about 13 percent larger than the U.S. That means that Spain's share of the euro zone's economy (8.2%) is almost precisely equivalent to New York's share of the U.S. economy, when you include NYC's periphery in Northern New Jersey, Long Island, and parts of Pennsylvania. A useful analog when you hear stories about Spain's impending doom.
Be sure to follow the link to the Wall Street Journal's ranking of the size of economies of countries and US cities.  A few surprises for me in this listing included discovering the DC area ranks as the fourth largest economic region in the US and that Pakistan's economy (population 177 million) is only about two-thirds the size of the Greece's economy (population 11.3 million) and roughly the same size as the city of Detroit (population 706 thousand -- and shrinking).

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