US & World Economies

    The health of the U.S. and world economies impact global markets, trade, and more. Learn how different economies and their growth or contraction can impact one another.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    • What is the largest economy in the world?

      When measuring world economies by gross domestic product (GDP) in current, unadjusted prices, the U.S. is the largest economy in the world. However, if you considered purchasing power parity (PPP), China would be seen as the world’s largest economy.

    • Where does the U.S. rank in the world economy?

      The U.S. ranks first or second in the world economy, depending on how you measure it. Based on current, unadjusted gross domestic product (GDP), the U.S. ranks No. 1. If you take purchasing power parity (PPP) into account, China ranks No. 1, and the U.S. ranks No. 2.

    • How does the U.S. affect the world economy?

      The U.S. is one of the largest economies in the world. The U.S. contributes a good portion to the world’s gross domestic product (GDP). The process of opening world markets and expanding trade began in the U.S. and the nation is now a leading global trader. Significant growth in the U.S. could directly boost the world economy, while a contraction could also negatively impact global financial markets.

    • What is a market economy?

      A market economy is an economic system that is based on free enterprise. That means that you as a consumer are free to choose which products or services you want to buy. You can also start or expand a business, or you can be a worker who chooses which job and employer you want to work for. Throughout it all, the government collects tax revenue from sales, income, payroll, and more.

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    Page Sources

    1. International Monetary Fund. "GDP, Current Prices." Accessed Oct. 20, 2021.