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.