I was recently having a discussion about unemployment in the U.S. and how it relates to the $500 billion annual U.S. trade deficit. That got me thinking: just how much do Americans spend per month on imported goods and services? Well I did a few calculations, and what I found was shocking.
I divided the total value of imports in the U.S.A. for 2013 ($2.74 trillion) by the number of adults in the U.S.A. (240 million), then I divided that by 12 (for 12 months in a year). On average, each U.S. adult is responsible for over $950 in imported goods and services per month!
That is much more than I thought was even possible. Can you imagine that? Every month, every U.S. adult is responsible for nearly $1,000 in imported goods and services. We have really let ourselves go!
But here is something equally amazing. If we could get the average U.S. adult down to just $790 of imported goods and services per month (that should be doable, right?), we would have no trade deficit at all. The trade deficit may seem insurmountable, but when you consider how much we are currently importing, we really don’t have that far to go.
In fact, if we could simply replace 17% of the imports we consume each year with U.S.-made goods and services, we would have zero trade deficit, and that would pump enough money into the economy (nearly $500 billion per year) that everyone in the U.S. who wanted to work would be able to find a job.
If more Americans will start to just consider where products are made in their purchasing decisions, we may really start to see improvements. Please consider taking the Buy American Challenge today.
Until next time, here’s to doing what we can to support our country by buying American.