Posts Tagged 'survey of current business'

Activities of U.S. Affiliates of Foreign Multinational Enterprises in 2012

The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) has released preliminary statistics on the activities of U.S. affiliates of foreign multinational enterprises (MNEs) in 2012. These statistics are based on the results of the 2012 Benchmark Survey of Foreign Direct Investment in the United States (“inward” direct investment.)

These statistics cover the finances and operations of U.S. affiliates of foreign MNEs—including balance sheet and income statement details, employment and employee compensation, capital expenditures, trade in goods, and expenditures for research and development.

The activities of majority-owned U.S. affiliates are featured in the statistics. Less detailed statistics are also presented for all U.S. affiliates (both majority owned and minority owned). BEA also produces statistics that cover the domestic and foreign activities of U.S. MNEs, that is enterprises involved in “outward”  direct  investment. Jointly,  these statistics and the statistics on the activities of U.S. affiliates are referred to as statistics on the activities of multinational enterprises (AMNEs).

The current-dollar value added of majority-owned U.S. affiliates, a measure of their contribution to U.S. gross domestic product, totaled  $773.8 billion in 2012. Current-dollar value added rose 3.7 percent in 2012, following larger increases in 2010 and 2011, but it grew less rapidly than the value added of all U.S. private industry in 2012. As a result, affiliates’ share of U.S. private industry value added decreased from  6.2  percent in  2011 to  6.1  percent in 2012. Majority-owned U.S. affiliates employed 5.8 million workers in 2012, an increase of 1.3 percent, following  larger increases in 2010 and 2011. The share of U.S. private industry employment accounted for by these affiliates was 5.0 percent, down from 5.1 percent in 2011.

Some additional highlights of the statistics on majority-owned U.S. affiliates for 2012:

  • As in previous years, affiliates with ultimate beneficial  owners  (UBO)  in  seven  countries—Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and Japan—accounted for nearly three-fourths of the value added by all majority-owned U.S. affiliates.
  • Exports of goods by affiliates rose 5 percent.
  • Imports of goods by affiliates rose 4 percent. About 60 percent of the goods imported by affiliates were intended for resale without further processing.
  • Research and development (R&D) performed by affiliates rose 6 percent.

For more information, read the full article in the November Survey of Current Business.  Click here for all the data tables.

What is the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis?

The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, a unit of the U.S. Department of Commerce, is the federal agency responsible for measuring the U.S. economy, or as some say, BEA is the nation’s accountant. It is responsible for measuring what is produced, what is earned, and how it is spent.  BEA is well known as one of the world’s premier economic statistical agencies, producing some of the most closely watched economic indicators and leading the way in cutting-edge macroeconomic measurement.

Each month, the Bureau pulls together a wealth of data from the public and private sector to provide a comprehensive and consistent picture of economic activity for the nation as a whole and for its various sectors. In addition, the Bureau produces data on U.S. economic interactions with the rest of the world, such as trade and international investment.  These data are considered among the most timely, relevant, and accurate in the world.

BEA is somewhat unique among federal agencies in that it is made up of, and lead by, an entirely career staff; it employs no political appointees. This is done, in part, to ensure the integrity and the perception of the integrity of the nation’s key economic indicators.

The data that BEA produces allow businesses, agencies, researchers, and the American people to better understand what is going on in the U.S. economy. That information is used by people to make financial decisions like whether to buy a home, while businesses rely on the data to make decisions about capital investments and hiring.
  
BEA produces a wide variety of economic statistics through its national, international, regional, and industry accounts. Probably the most common and one of the most important is gross domestic product, or GDP.  GDP is the measure of the total value of all final goods and services produced within the United States during a given period of time. It looks at the activity of consumers, businesses, government agencies, and imports and exports. It is the primary measure of growth in the economy. In the first quarter of 2012, GDP exceeded $15 trillion. (Adjusted for inflation, GDP topped $13.5 trillion.)  
GDP and the related BEA accounts are used for a wide variety of economic policy purposes. 

For example:

  • GDP accounts are used by the Administration and Congress to prepare the federal budget projections.  
  • GDP accounts are used by the Federal Reserve Board to formulate monetary policy. Two of the most important variables guiding monetary policy are real GDP growth and inflation as measured by BEA’s personal consumption expenditures price index.
  • BEA regional data are used to distribute more than $327 billion in federal funds for Medicaid, Title I Education Grants, the Children’s Health Insurance Program, and other programs to state and local governments.

In addition to GDP, BEA produces other economic indicators and posts them on its Web site.  You can explore these statistics through the interactive data tables or through the archive of the Survey of Current Business, the Bureau’s monthly journal.