Top Manufactured Exports from America

While it may seem like the national and global political world is suffering from continued turmoil, there is some good news that is perhaps getting lost in the mix. The U.S. economy is actually performing quite well with an unemployment rate of around 4.7% and healthy export numbers that equal about $1.454 trillion worth of goods, which is up by a full 37% from the Great Recession of 2009. Part of the growth has been spurred by the entrepreneur community. When downsizing made it hard for both Baby Boomers and college graduates to find work, many individuals within these demographics entered the gig and entrepreneur economy. As America continues to finds its bearings once again and enjoy relative prosperity, many of these small businesses, that emerged out of necessity, are poised to expand and enter the export market.

Top Ten U.S. Export markets

Currently, traditional industries continue to lead the export market although the overall volume of exports is on the rise. As of 2017, here are the top ten U.S. export markets:


  1. Machinery. This category mostly includes computers despite the fact that our own markets rely heavily on technology imports from China and Japan. Often times, the US is responsible for exporting specific parts that are then used in the manufacturing of global brands.
  2. Electrical machinery. Again, while the U.S. has slipped in recent years when it comes to being a dominant source of technology and machinery, it is still a major contributor to global markets.
  3. Aircraft and spacecraft. The US exports a tremendous amount of technology in the form of aerospace parts and products to the rest of the world. Some of these products are used for commercial purposes while a significant portion is used for military applications.
  4. Vehicles. The automotive industry has effectively rebounded since the Great Recession and US parts and vehicles continue to be in demand,
  5. Mineral fuels. Many Americans underestimate just how much of US fuel production is actually shipped overseas.
  6. Medical equipment.
  7. Plastics
  8. Gems and precious metals.
  9. Pharmaceuticals.
  10. Organic Chemicals.

What You Might Be Surprised to Learn

For Americans who want to continue to grow the middle class and ensure that more people are able to enjoy financial security and prosperity, it may comes as a bit of a surprise to learn that so many of the most prosperous industries in the country are shipping goods to foreign countries. It is important to remember that these same industries are also making large contributions at home. When it comes to large scale industries the motivation often has to do with increasing profit margins, rather than offering quality products to new markets.


Ultimately, as demonstrated above, the relationship between imports and exports can be complicated when it comes balancing the best interest of a global economy and individual needs of a company versus the needs of the country of origin. Exports can quickly become a loaded economic issue, but in the case of small businesses, things tend to work on a much more direct level. If you have a worthwhile product, the US makes a sincere effort to simplify the export process while also ensuring overall safety. While shipping any items overseas is governed by certain rules, small businesses will find that the US government is more than willing to support its own exporters.

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