What does the US Export?
Here's a closer look at our goods exports in 2011. The two biggest categories — industrial supplies and capital goods — account for about $500 billion a piece.
Here's a breakdown of our services exports:
Royalties and licensing includes money people pay to use American software, and to distribute movies and TV shows. It also includes wonkier stuff, like payments to use patents on industrial processes.
One interesting note about travel: When foreign tourists come to the U.S. and buy stuff, it counts as exports. This makes sense if you think about how the money flows. It's money coming in from other countries, and being used to buy services produced in the U.S.
So who's buying all these goods and services? Here's the top five:
That Canada and Mexico hold the top spots is a reminder that, even in this globalized world, proximity still matters. (Also: NAFTA.)
Correction: Due to an editing error, an earlier version of this post had an incorrect figure for the U.S. trade deficit.