The U.S. remained the world’s largest services market and the world’s leading exporter and importer of services in 2018, according to the International Trade Commission’s latest annual report on trends in U.S. services trade. This year’s report focuses on financial services and includes chapters on banking, insurance, and securities services that analyze global market conditions in each industry, examine recent trade performance, and summarize the industry’s outlook.
Highlights of this year’s report, which describes trade in services via cross-border transactions through 2018 and via affiliate sales through 2017, include the following.
- In 2018 the value of U.S. private services exports was $805.7 billion (up 3.5 percent from 2017), while imports totaled $544.3 billion (up 4.67 percent).
- Preliminary data indicate that U.S. services exports increased by 2.2 percent to $823.7 billion in 2019 while imports rose by 5.0 percent to $571.3 billion.
- Sales of services by foreign affiliates of U.S. firms totaled $1.6 trillion in 2017 (up 14.3 percent) and the value of services purchased from foreign-owned affiliates in the U.S. totaled $996.0 billion (up 13.6 percent).
- The United Kingdom was the largest U.S. services trade partner in 2017 in terms of both imports and exports. The other top export markets were Canada, China, Ireland, and Japan, while the top import sources were Germany, Japan, Canada, and India.
- Financial services accounted for 16 percent of U.S. cross-border services exports and 14 percent of imports in 2018.
- Financial services accounted for about 19.8 percent of total sales by foreign affiliates of U.S. firms and 17.6 percent of total purchases from foreign-owned firms in the U.S.
- The value of private sector financial services totaled $1.4 trillion in 2018 or 8.6 of total U.S. private sector GDP.
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